Whether you’re working on a novel, poetry or a 10 page paper, the familiar enemy that is writer’s block can rear its ugly head and leave you feeling overwhelmed and at a loss.
I’m going to give you a few tips from my own personal experience of how I powered through writer’s block and how to avoid it in the future.
You want to always make sure when you’re writing you’re in an environment that relaxes you and provides peace.
If you ride the train everyday to work or school and you find yourself doing your best thinking while watching everything blur past you that might be your writing safe haven. If you need absolute silence to concentrate find somewhere that can provide that to you, like a library or a home office. Some people, like myself, need to listen to music to calm their nerves and find their center. Music lets me get in touch with my emotions and gives me ton of inspiration. Maybe you need to be one with nature, in the park listening to the birds chirp while appreciating the beauty of the flowers. All people are different so what works for one may not work for you. But the idea is the same, find your peace.
After you figure out what environment provides solace for you, you’ll want to write an outline before anything else. Trust me, an outline will save you time and many headaches.
I made the mistake of not writing an outline before my first novel and it was painfully long to complete. I knew what I wanted my story to be about but in the beginning I didn’t sit down and think out how I wanted to get to the end result. Around the middle of the book I had had enough of writing little tid bits here and there. So I found my center and my outline was born. I wrote down each event in the order they needed to happen. Knowing what was to happen next helped me elaborate on more details and seamlessly enter the next event. Everything flowed and connected perfectly.
As long as you have a clear idea of what you’re writing about you will have no problem writing an outline. It’s your secret weapon! Just think long and hard and use that creative brain of yours to play the story out in your mind. Think of it like a movie. Everything has a purpose and leads to the big reveal. Map out the journey and you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easy everything else will fall into place.
You’ll also want to develop a routine. Set aside a certain time of the day when you will write. Even if it’s just 30 minutes, you don’t want to go a day without writing anything. If you do you might start to develop excuses and begin to procrastinate. Just like working out, you have to be consistent to get the results you want. I’m not saying to rush, just be mindful that you can fall off of the writing wagon if you go too long without any interaction. Have a certain snack, a favorite drink, something that will be apart of your writing process and get you in the zone.
Don’t get discouraged if you hit a wall even after writing an outline and developing a routine. Remember your solace and revisit it. It’ll bring you back to where you need to be!
What are some of the things you do to get out of a writing rut? What is some advice you would give to get to the finish line?