Most web searches done by starting writers are trying to answer a simple, yet important question:
Where should I start?
It’s quite an ambiguous question but more often than not, it means how to start writing. I, however, believe that the actual question, any beginner should answer, is what to start writing about. Here are some ideas on what you could possible write about that might interest your target audience.
Say 17 to 24 – you could begin by writing teenage stories. A common theme to your writing would be inexperience, starting awkward relations and struggling to become a grownup – a sort of view of adult life through the eyes of a kid. Why would you want to write about that? Well, you would be doing it for people your own age, and it’s only natural you write about something close to their hearts and minds. At this age, would you read “War and Peace”? Right.
Say 25 to 35 – a stage I prefer to call “shit-hits-the-fan”. People, it’s the best time of your life! You get to taste bitter-sweetness of the whole “I am an adult” thing, yet there is still a lot to learn. So, that’s probably what you gonna write about all this new experience you are going through – love and personal betrayals, crime, money and drugs and perhaps even about inequality.
Finally, 35 to about 90 – oh, at that stage you realise the many mistakes you have made along the way. Here you works would be all about punishment, philosophy of life and presumably, its inevitability to end in death.
90 and onward – you probably don’t care much about anything anymore. Finita la comedia.
Why would I grade it like that? Well, my dear starting writer – you can’t write about something you don’t understand from the point of experience. So, before you hit 25, you will have written aplenty – practise your penmanship, so to speak. Of course, some start earlier. Take a look at Stephen King. He had accumulated a lot of rejection slips before he finished his education. And during his college he wrote adult material, because he had written everything he could have in his early teens about teenage life. So there you go. Your first work gonna be shit, but that’s okay – nobody gonna read it anyway. Practise some more and you will give birth to a child of long nights, a bit of marijuana and your ideas.
Be good – write something.