Updated: Apr 13
How many times have you stared at a blank screen for hours thinking, "I have no idea what to write."? Too many. Right?
What if I told you the blank page is nothing but a your self-doubt taking control of your mind? It is running havoc, zapping your creative juices dry and making you sick. It is no secret those of us with power over the pen are prone to depression. We joke about it online and every convention.
Throughout this article I'm going to give you some tips that will help with both issues simultaneously. Tried and true steps I've used for years. I went four years between books. Now I'm writing three at once and coping with PTSD.
Lets get started.
5 Steps To Conquering Writer's Block
Daydream: Most put read at the top of the list. I don't because you need to let your imagination soar. Remember when you were a kid playing pretend with your sibling or the neighbor down the street, you need to do that -but in your head. Pretend you're the motorcyclist running from the cops (i.e. cops and robbers). Imagine you're the last person on Earth searching for water. Have some one hide your water bottle and seek it out. Have fun with it.
Shake Your Groove Thang: Grab your hairbrush and sing with the radio. Dance. Rock out. Not only with this spark your imagination, it will release happy endorphins to your brain. These actions will pump oxygenated blood to your muscles that have been atrophying while you made sure you kept your butt in chair. There is not need to go to the gym, unless you want to of course, simply shake what your mother gave you.
Read: Delve into other genres for awhile. By all means know your genre. Chances are you know it in and out. That is why you're writing it. Now read other types of books. Read nonfiction books, too. A lot of us are introverts. Think of this as people watching without leaving your house. The book that really got me going on this trend was Tina Fey's Bossypants. She narrated her audiobook. I listened to it while my husband was having his gallbladder removed. I was too nervous to read. Her voice and her escapades helped me stay out of my own negative thoughts. I wrote 12k words that week while taking care of him.
Meditate: Some times you need to stop thinking. Put down the pen. Step away from the laptop. Try SMILE. It is a one minute meditate I recommend to beginners. Close your eyes. Breathe deep, all in and all out. Smile comfortably. In your mind's eye imagine a loved one smiling back at you. You will smile brighter. You may even laugh. There is a great possibility you will go over a minute. You're brain cannot tell the difference between a real smile and a fake one. So the fake one becomes real. Those happy endorphins go off like fireworks sparking creative juices. If you are a romance writer this will be your big money maker.
Write: Last, but not least, the act of writing. It does not matter what you write as long as you write every day. It doesn't have to be amazing. Nothing ever is the first go around. Don't throw anything away. You never know when a piece of crap will be a cherished work of art down the road.
I hope these help you as much as they've helped me. Good luck meeting your writing goals. Let me know how you're doing. We're in this together.