What is Writer’s Block?
As writers, we all experience the dread writer's block. You go to your desk and try to put some words on paper but you just cannot write. You try to write using your favorite pen, your best machine, or even your favorite writing sweater but all your efforts are in vain. You feel guilty when you experience a writer's block while you still have pending projects for your clients. The situation gets worse if your writing deadlines are fast approaching. What can you do to break off the writer's block? This article gives you some tips you can use to get over this situation.
What Can You Do?
First, you will need to make sure that you are really experiencing a writer's block. You may just be going through a moment of laziness. If you are sure, try to get some rest. While l do Credit: indiereader.com understand that some writers live off their craft. Working 18 hours a day to make money off your craft will lead to a writer's block. Your brain needs rest to enable it to process information well. Get yourself some rest. Make sure that you always get a minimum of 8 hours sleep every day to help you keep going.
Once you rest, try writing at a different location. Not only do our brains require rest, they do require some variety. While some writer's rooms are clean and well arranged, most of our rooms smell of coffee and is sometimes stuffy. We also do not have time to keep our writing spot tidy. Moreover, our neighborhoods are most times not located in the best of places. Try writing in a different location to shake off the writer's block. If you have a library in your city, try writing from there as it may be more conducive to your work.
In the spirit of variety, fill your life with abundance. While writing is enjoyable, it is not all that you are capable of doing and experiencing in this world. Always take a break from your work to enjoy life. You can visit friends, go to the movies, go to the park etc. Whatever you choose to do, make sure that you fill your life with abundance. This helps you get over the writer's block as your brain gets to shift gears and enjoy different things. The brain will appreciate your efforts by helping you put down some words on paper. Try to find your initial motivation for writing to help you get over your writer's block. As a writer, you have your motivations for doing your work. You had your reasons for writing that novel. You had your reasons for trying to undertake that groundbreaking research work. Go back and find your reasons and you will banish the writer's block that you are experiencing. If your motivations have changed since you started writing, it is time for you to find new reasons to write your work. This may require some hard work and effort from your part. Whatever it takes, do it.
Do more research. Sometimes, your writer's block occurs due to lack of information. Always do your homework as you keep writing. Writing is a process that keeps evolving. You will not only do research before you start writing, you need to keep researching as you are writing and even after you have finished your writing. This is what makes writing an exciting journey. Try different ways of getting your research done. Watch documentaries, attend lectures, speak to experts in the field, surf the internet etc. Vary the ways that you are researching to ensure that you keep off the writer's block.
Ask for more money. A writer's block always occurs due to poor financial remuneration. You can have clients who ask you to produce quality work but the pay is a joke. Ask for more if you have to. Do not be afraid of losing a client regardless of how much you need the money. Always put the terms of writing on paper if you are working on a long term project. This avoids any disputes and puts things in the open from the word go. If all else fails, do not be afraid to let a client go if the pay is unreasonable.
Tips for the Writing Process
All the ideas so far are things you can do when you are taking time from writing in order to clear your mind. What can you do when you have deadlines, goals, or a need to press out some words? The following are some tips for you to try:
- Try brainstorming. Take a piece of paper, draw a square in the middle of it and write your main topic in there. Now get a stopwatch, egg timer, or your IPhone and set the countdown to 5 minutes. For that amount of time make lines from the square going out to a circle and write whatever comes to mind in those circles. Do not filter out anything, no matter how silly or unrelated it seems to the main topic. After the five minutes have past, set the countdown timer to 2 minutes. Do the same technique from each circle for Credit: mixeddigital.com that allotted time. Again, do not filter what your brain produces, but put these thoughts in triangles. Whenever you have completed that, now go back and filter the subtopics in the circles. Eliminate topics that seem not to flow from the main topic. Do not discard these. For some reason your brain went there and these subtopics may be a good main topic for a future article. When you eliminate the subtopics those thoughts in the triangles should also be eliminated from this paper. Now go through and make sure the thought in the remaining triangles are appropriate for the subtopic and main topic. You know have an outline for the project. Just start writing now.
- Set goals on how many words you want to write in a setting and in a day. Push for this goal. Also put a time on how long you are going to write. Let both of these be guides and standards but not limits on what you are going to write. Even if the stuff you are writing is “fluff” keep it in there for right now. You can edit it out later.
- Turn your facebook, email, and Iphone off while you are writing. Check it before and after you are writing if you must, but do not let these be distracting. Along those same lines it to turn off the warning signals for items on the Iphone. You know those little numbers or symbols that come up on the application when something has been added or updated.
- Ask your friends and family to not bother you during this time frame you have set unless it is an emergency. Let them know your goals and hopefully they will support you.
- Try to have a place in your home or office that is dedicated to your writing job. Yes this is a job. The consistency of the place where you write can help be a transition from one writing session to another. Plus, your mind and body will become accustomed to this place as a place for creativity to take place.
- I have already told you this, think of this process as a job. Train your brain, behaviors and thoughts as you would a job. With that being said, writing should also be fun. This JOB should be fun. Make sure you are having fun doing it. If you are not, then you might not be having writer’s block, you may be having writing burnout. That is a topic for a whole other article.
I never say good luck with talking about this process of writing. It has nothing to do with luck and all to do with hard work and dedication. Have fun. Please feel free to leave a comment or ask questions you may have.