How to overcome writer’s block
A lot of people talk about writer’s block and how to overcome it. They suggest things like forcing yourself to write and while that might work for some, I don’t think it does. I’ve tried to make myself write but I’ve always found writing crap doesn’t help my work-in-progress in any way.
My best advice if you’re feeling stuck is the following:
- Don’t sweat it. The writing bug has bitten you before and it will again. If you’re relaxed and not trying to force it, I’m convinced you’ll get back into it much faster.
- Keep your work-in-progress in the back of your mind while you do other things. I always find that if I just let it percolate in the back of my mind, the solution often presents itself.
- Read something else. Sometimes you just need a break from your own words and worlds.
- Watch a movie or two or three. Take notes about how the story unfolds, what you like about it, or what you don’t. Sometimes figuring out what you like about stories helps you figure out what you want to do with your own.
- Take a nice, lovely walk. (Take a notepad or your phone to jot down notes that are sure to flood it. They most likely will.)
- Take a shower. I always do my best thinking in the shower. I keep a waterproof notepad and pencil in mine because ideas always come. I think water is magic for the brain.
- Go for a drive. Turn up the radio. Have some fun. I’m convinced that enjoying yourself opens up the creative areas of your mind and lets the ideas flow freely.
- Think about (not worry about) your book while you’re falling asleep. Just have it in your mind, knowing that you’ll find the solutions. I’ve had characters come to me in my dreams and tell me how to work out plot problems.
In a nutshell, just relax. I believe forcing things binds your creativity, but relaxing will let it drift and tap into the universal core of creation. If you were meant to be a writer, and you’ve written before, you’ll write again. Just because words aren’t going onto pages at the moment doesn’t mean that you’re not working on a story idea or building up characters in your mind.
Wooohooo! Then celebrate when you start writing again and the next time you get stuck remember that it’s not permanent and will pass.
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