Don’t you just LOVE writer’s block? Unless you’re a complete masochistic psychopath with no soul, the answer to that is probably no.
I’m certainly not a fan. There is nothing worse than having the itch to write, settling yourself down to get it done, and then staring off into space and wondering what on earth you’re SUPPOSED to write.
It just isn’t fair, is it? To have all of those beautiful words escape you and run off into the night cackling because you can’t catch them.
I’ll acknowledge that, yes, sometimes it is all in our heads. That also means that we have the power to kick its butt, though, so let’s run through a quick list of ideas for conquering writer’s block and getting your groove back.
1. Do a writer’s prompt or two
I love writing prompts. Sometimes they’re the best way to fight that writer’s block. I can’t promise that it will always inspire your current project, but at least you’ll get some words down.
ThinkWritten has a list of 365 writing prompts that got me jump-started one snowy day when the inspiration just wasn’t coming to me. If there’s a list out there that you like, let me know!
2. Revisit an old project
Some might see going through your old work as disruptive to your current process, but I like going back to reread some of my old work. I did a fair amount of fanfiction, and those were some of my first completed works. (Don’t knock fanfiction; some truly incredible ones are out there if you take the time to look for them.)
Read through your favorite scenes, rewrite one or two, or just look for some inspiration in them. Even if you aren’t as enthused with them as you once were, you may find something that will inspire you to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) again.
3. Immerse yourself in creativity
Listen to a favorite song. Listen to a new song. Reread a favorite book. Start tackling your To Be Read pile. Watch a movie. Binge-watch something on Netflix.
I find nothing more inspiring than reading, listening to, or watching what another artist has poured their soul into. Let their world help to shape yours.
4. Take a walk
As writers, sometimes we may get way too caught up in our own heads. It’s okay if you need a breather.
Take a walk and discover a new place in your town or city, sit down in the park and watch people interact, or grab some coffee with a friend. Step away from the computer or the notebook for a few minutes and let your thoughts come together, however you need to.
5. Free write
When I was younger, I used to hate whenever teachers told me to free write. Just put pen to paper for ten minutes and don’t stop writing, even if it’s nonsense? But WHY?
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to appreciate this. Free writing allows the words to flow with less obstacles, if you let the process do what it’s meant to. When you stop thinking too hard about it, you might be surprised at what was desperately waiting to land on the page.
Fellow writers, if you have any other suggestions to add to this list, feel free to comment below or tweet us!