It happens. I’ve been there; you just stare at your screen or paper and do just more of that, stare. You know you have to write, but the words just don’t come. It’s like your pen and paper have become sworn enemies. Relax. There are things you can do to smash this so-called block to pieces. Read on.
1. Examine yourself.
Are you sure it’s really ‘writer’s block’ and not the sneaky fellow called procrastination? (Just checking.) Or are you just not confident of your creativity? You can confide in someone about it.
2. Practice free writing.
Just. Write. Don’t bother whether to use “asides” or “besides” or if the last line you wrote sounds cliche. Be free, don’t restrict your creativity by being overly conscious of grammatical errors, punctuation or tenses. Editing can come later, first let your pen dance, and enjoy the process.
3. Let it be for a while.
So, you started writing, but it seems the tap has dried up? You can’t seem to come up with the next appropriate line or you just feel something’s not quite right with the piece? Take a break; walk, play word games, music, read a book, watch a movie, look out through your window, etc. Take your mind of it for some minutes (or days) before coming back to it with a ‘new’ eye.
4. Find out what prompts your writing, and do more of it.
For me, sometimes it could be reading a book, poem, article, or even observing.
5. Make writing and everyday habit and not just a convenience.
That way, it becomes a part of you and you’ll improve overtime.
6. Ascertain your ‘when’ ‘what’ ‘where’
Where is your ideal writing space? At a desk, On your bed?
Do you write better when there’s soft music playing? Or do you prefer solitude? The early hours of the morning with birds chirping outside? Or at night when others are asleep?
What medium do you use? Paper and pen? Or would you rather type?
7. Do some research on or offline on the topic, theme or subject you’re writing on.
That way you’ll be armed with enough information and ideas to spur you on.
Police Google is your friend. 😊
8. Try writing exercises or prompts.
They really do help get the words flowing.
9. Don’t be too rigid with your writing mode/location.
Mix things up a bit. Try new ways, mediums or places once in a while.
Personally, I’ve tried people-watching in a busy restaurant while I wrote.
Finally, here’s a quote to prep you up this week:
“What I try to do is write. I may write for two weeks ‘the cat sat on the mat, that is that, not a rat.’ And it might be just the most boring and awful stuff. But I try. When I’m writing, I write. And then it’s as if the muse is convinced that I’m serious and says, ‘Okay. Okay. I’ll come.’”