Friday, May 31, 2013

What I Have Learned about Writers Block

Writers block, I think is different for everyone. It can have different causes and different remedies. Lately I have been struggling a lot with blockages and attempting to get through them. I thought I would share what I learned about my own personal writers block in case it is of any use to you.

Writers Block Cause #1: Exhaustion

If my brain or body or anything is tired - I can't write. I think it is because it requires energy to perform mental tasks (if only it burnt calories too!)

The Remedy
Sleep. Plain and simple. (However getting that sleep is not always that straight forward.)

Writers Block Cause #2: Stage Fright

This is the only title I could come up with for this cause. By 'stage fright' - I mean that feeling when you are getting ready to write (or revise) a very important scene and you are afraid it is going to fall flat. This what has been plaguing me the most lately.

The Remedy
Skip it and move on to something else. This is actually very difficult for me because I like to write and revise from start to finish. But learning to skip and move on is helping me power through the blocks.

Writers Block Cause #3: Disenchanted Feelings

This can be either losing interest or falling out of love with you WIP. Luckily this has not happened to me with this project (but it has happened in the past).

The Remedy

Shelve it. Forcing yourself to work on something that does not inspire you is going to be painful and will not be your best work. Set it aside and give it time to rest. Maybe all you need is a little distance.

Writers Block Cause #4: Shiny New Idea

When a new idea sparks your imagination it can be hard to continue with your current project. This is another thing that has been blocking me lately. I am still in love with my WIP - but this pesky new idea keeps nagging me.

The Remedy

Indulge yourself. I set a writing goal - and once I have met it I let myself work on my shiny new idea for a set amount of time. That way the shiny new ideas becomes a very tempting carrot and encourages me to make it through the block.

Writers Block Cause #5: Over Thinking

This kind of goes with stage fright. But is more a block because you don't know what to write and can't get the rusty wheels in your head to start turning and give you inspiration.

The Remedy

Distraction. I go onto iWriteNetwork to chat with writerly friends. Check facebook, turn on the TV, or even write a blog post :)

What have you learned about writers block from your own struggles

1 comment:

  1. I usually get blocked when my story has hit a wall. When I'm just not sure where it's time to go next. My favorite thing to tell people who are blocked is that it's time to kill someone off or blow something up. That can be figurative, of course. If you don't want to be so violent, just do SOMETHING exciting! Throw in a twist. It helps.