How to Use Design Thinking for Writing Non Fiction

How to use the wicked problem, prototype and testing techniques to write and publish

Adolfo Ramírez Corona
6 min readOct 23, 2019

--

Every once in a while, some method or technique about problem-solving or creative thinking becomes fashionable (Six Hats to Think of Edward de Bono, very eighties, come to mind).

Design Thinking is now very popular, basically extending the methods and techniques used in modern design (mainly digital and application) to other business areas.

It is not very different from applying mathematical principles to solve non-mathematical problems, such as finding the constants and variables of an equation and finding what can we change or not in conflict.

Of course, design thinking is a much more accessible language to understand and therefore to apply in less time.

The point is that, after using, studying and reusing some of the techniques of design thinking for work matters, it occurred to me it can be applied to writing.

Whether you want to write something or think using writing, these techniques or simple tips can help with your task.

What is Design Thinking?

There are several steps or stages of design thinking, but I believe that its core (and offering, in that case) is in two or three fundamental concepts.

All methods require clearly defining the problem to be solved. The interesting thing about this method is how it is designated: the wicked problem.

That is, you have to determine the problem or the part of it that has no apparent solution, it is paradoxical, inconceivable, incomprehensible, in short, the challenging part of the problem.

I think it has several purposes, whether it's explicit or not. For example, the challenge is motivational, but also, looking for something far-fetched helps to think elaborately, an important ingredient of creativity.

The other concept is the prototype. The sooner a prototype of the solution is developed, the better, because that will help you test and learn from the tests.

--

--

Adolfo Ramírez Corona

Author, psychotherapist, coach—Human behavior, UX, media & audiences—Father, husband, meditator—Courses & coaching: antifragilewriting.com—More adolforismos.com