1 Million Story Ideas Special: Bits of Positivity

Over the past decade, digital tools and mobile platforms have rocketed journalism to a universe of innovation, interactivity and immediacy once unimaginable. Yet, without stellar content, journalism 2.0 is not worth the effort to read, watch, click on, scroll through, contribute to or connect with. Everything journalism was, is and will be rests on our ability to tell a story. And every story starts with an idea.

So let’s brainstorm.

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To help get you started, I have set up and regularly update the special page 1 Million Story Ideas for Student Journalists on my blog College Media Matters. It is aimed at inspiring student journalists to localize, adapt and reinvent a range of stories — quirky and mainstream, text-based and visual, interactive and investigatory.

Here is one example.

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Bits of Positivity

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The four-year-old in the video is almost adorably confident, rattling off a list of things and people she likes and reasons she rocks rapid-fire into a bathroom mirror. The video recording her affirmations — apparently a version of ones she recited daily growing up — now sports more than 14 million hits.

Ferret out or stitch together your own set of affirmations — for yourself, your school, a sports team, an aging campus building, a sagging academic program or an intro course you just cannot bring yourself to like. Or grab bits of positivity from your student peers — getting quick-hit rundowns of what people are especially thankful for at the moment, what they are feeling confident about or are just really enjoying about life, and why. Even consider using a single person’s affirmation(s) as a starting a point for a more in-depth profile on what makes them tick or gets them through the day.

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For more ideas, check out 1 Million Story Ideas for Student Journalists, a quick-hit, unending, hopefully indispensable, fun, fun, fun digital story ideas fountain.

Also order a copy of my book Journalism of Ideas: Brainstorming, Developing, and Selling Stories in the Digital Age. Dubbed “the next new mandatory text for college journalists,” it features advice from hundreds of contributors, lots of digital storytelling tips, tons of story ideas and more than 300 games aimed at sparking you to come up with endless ideas of your own.

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