Nov 23

Stumbling Through Writer’s Block

Eventually most authors come to a point where they simply can’t seem to generate the next idea. They can’t evoke the muse. Or they feel their plot is sick, and they can’t seem to find a way to help it out of it’s misery. Most authors who have reached this point blame their problems on writer’s block.

I say phooey.

Now let me quantify that – there really are times when we can’t write. But it is most often due to being overtired, rather than being blocked. There is a common cure for this state – often referred to as “refilling the well”. I am a great proponent of this cure. Blocked? Get some rest. A dream could be the answer. Go to an art show. Go for a walk. Do anything other than write – but for a short time, and if possible, include a creative slant to your non-writing activity. Do not watch TV – your mother was right, it will rot your brain. 

After you have taken a short period of time off, go back and read your story. Like it? Then write – even if you skip ahead and write an easy scene that is coming up soon in the book. You can go back and fill in the rest later.

Beyond this, I hope all my writing friends are now equipped with at least one critique partner. Someone who you can count on to objectively read your work and tell you the truth. Let those partners guide you when you feel you’ve reached a dead end. Although you might not take their suggestion, the conversation often leads to new ideas for your subconscious to mull over.

You are not writing because a mystical entity is guiding you. You write because you have it in you to write. You just need to let it out again. Don’t wait for inspiration.