As a writer, I have plenty of days when I just don’t feel like writing. There are no creative juices flowing and to be honest, the words in my head that sound so awesome read like garbage once I get them out. Sometimes my brain draws a blank when it should be creating a unique idea. I have found a few unconventional tricks that work to get my writer’s block unclogged and the words flowing freely.
Take a Break
When I am trying to force the words to flow from my fingertips and I have writer’s block, it simply singes my brain and perhaps slightly melts it. I can actually smell the smoke as the gears rub and grind. When I have a bad case of writer’s block, it works best for me to just take a break.
Walk away from the computer – go do some type of real life activity, maybe go for a walk, shop for groceries, visit Wal-Mart or do something with the family. That trip to Wal-Mart by itself is usually enough to jar loose whatever is blocking my brain.
Sometimes a break can be longer than just a break for the day. If you have a serious case of burnout or writer’s block you might need to take a few days off.
I write for a living and work my own erratic hours. There are times when I simply need to take the weekend off or take a couple of days off during the week. If you are able to do this, try it – you might be surprised at how much creativity you will feel at the end of your mini vacation.
Yep, we’ve been told all our lives that goofing off is not okay, but sometimes it really is a good thing. There are days when I am supposed to be writing – whether it’s articles that earn me money or fiction goals that I’ve set for myself – and it’s just not happening, I can’t seem to string together two coherent words. When that is the case I choose to goof off for a little while.
Goofing off is different from taking a break in that taking a break means removing yourself from the computer for awhile. Goofing off for me usually means playing a few rounds of Bejeweled Blitz, farming or socializing on Facebook or chatting with friends on Yahoo Instant Messenger for a little while.
Goofing off means that I’m avoiding what I need to do (working) in order to do what I just want to do (socializing or playing). Truthfully, spending a little bit of time goofing off usually refreshes me and somehow resets my brain to some degree – thus diminishing the current writer’s block that I might be suffering with. I probably goof off more than I really should, but hey – I never said I was perfect.
Write a Letter or an Email to a Friend
I can’t count the number of times I’ve had a writer’s block and felt as though I couldn’t get the words out of my head. Believe it or not, getting a project of any type completed can help. Choose a friend and simply write them a letter or an email. This will help you focus on completing a specific task – updating your friend about your life or something specific you want to share with them.
Make it fun – share a funny story with them or simply tell them about a recent event in your life. If you write for a living like I do, sometimes stepping back and writing something that is just for the sake of writing – not for making money – can help you beat your writer’s block.
Write Something Different
If you write primarily nonfiction articles, take a break and try to write a little fiction. If you write fiction, put it aside and write a personal essay or a how to article. Step outside of your normal genre and see if you can push that writer’s block aside with a different style of writing.
Change Your Setting
If you write in a specific spot, go somewhere else. If you have a laptop, take it outside and try to write. If you are chained to a desktop computer in a specific spot, clean off your desk and move things around. Sometimes a minor change is enough to kickstart your creativity.
Set Goals for Yourself
I started setting weekly goals for writing and I keep a daily journal of all of my writing activities. Having a visual in front of me to see my progress gives me motivation – even when I have writer’s block or just don’t feel like writing.
If you are suffering from writer’s block, try one or more of these tips to see if you can recapture your words and unleash your creativity.