“The condition of being unable to think of what to write or how to proceed with writing…”
Do you suffer from ‘Writer’s Block’?
Do you have to be ‘in the zone’ to write or is it part of your daily routine? Are you disciplined and organised and able to place your fingers on a keyboard and watch them magically move across the type face, until the designated word count trips happily across the screen? Or does your time in the creative chair fill you with a dread that freezes your fingers and turns your creative juices to stone.
I’ve never met an author who can honestly say that they don’t have times when the words just will not flow. When you can’t begin because you don’t know how to move your story along or what to write about. You’re stopped before you’ve started.
So how do you get round that? Edits and deadlines are always an incentive, but in the day-to-day job of getting the manuscript written, there are times when it feels like the last thing on earth to achieve. But the good news is – there are things that actually work.
Here are some of my tips on how to shake you out of a writing drought and fire up the creative juices. I’d be interested to hear yours too…
- Try National Novel-Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) – commit to writing 50k words in one month, sign up and set your target and get help via prompts and interaction with others taking the challenge.
- Read, then read, then read some more.
- Remember that it age is not a deterrent to writing. Frank McCourt was 66 when Angela’s Ashes was published. James A Michener wrote 40 books after the age of 40.
- Stop procrastinating. Just turn up at the page and write and don’t proof or edit until the end – let your writing flow, allowing yourself to write badly, the main thing is to keep writing.
- Turn off the internet. Switch off social media and emails and focus on the page.
- When the going gets tough, the tough keep going – everyone hits a low, the trick is to keep going.
- Set your work aside for a few weeks. When you go back to it, alter the type face so you are looking at a ‘different’ piece of work before editing.
- Write a blog, it’s a great way to get the words flowing.
- Get support from others, start or join a writer’s group and get mutual support and inspiration from like-minds.
- Believe in yourself – don’t die wondering.
Out now! Coffee Tea The Caribbean & Me