The dog days of summer can be challenging for news teams where story ideas don’t seem to be as plentiful as they are during the school year.

Not to worry, we’ve rounded up a few good ones you can try:

1. The impact of more expensive gas

Gas is definitely costing more this summer. There’s always a useful story you can do looking at simple ways you can save on gas. NBC did a nice job of that story idea here. But there’s also the story on how gas prices are impacting peoples jobs. For example, consider people who have to travel for a living, like musicians or artists who go from festival to festival each summer. Talk to them for a different view on the impact of rising gas costs.

2. Who are the adult learners?

Forty percent of college students now are non traditional, meaning they are under 25 years of age. Does that percentage hold up at your local college and if that percentage has changed over time, how have schools changed how they teach? Here’s a story that looks at that trend. 

3. Write about the economy

Labor Day is a great time to jump into different aspects of the economy. This story touches on a bunch of trends that could be perfect to write about in your community: Robots, popularity of “alternative work arrangements,” retaining and recruiting top talent. That link above offers a treasure of ideas and trends.

4. Start asking your readers questions

Many newspapers this year have started features where they answer reader questions on a host of topics. For many, it’s turned into a weekly feature. Here’s an example of one, using a nice reader engagement tool for seeking questions and showing responses. The summer might be the perfect time to get such a feature going.