Struggling with writer’s block can be very defeating!
If you’ve been writing for any amount of time, you’ve likely hit the proverbial wall that all writers fear. Though it may seem like a rite of passage, you do not have to subject yourself to the frustration that is writer’s block. You CAN overcome it quickly, and it can actually be a step forward in your path of inspiration. Do not fear the block; embrace it and make it work for you. Let’s begin with a few lies writers need to stop telling themselves.
Debunking the Myths Surrounding Writer’s Block:
- Experiencing writer’s block means you aren’t a good writer. Just no. All writers experience this, even bestselling authors.
- Experiencing writer’s block means the piece you are working on is unworthy of pursuit. Negatory, fellow writer. Just as it takes a while to get to know a real person, it takes a while to get to know a story even if it is yours. Scratch that — especially if it is yours.
- There is one magic cure to “fix” it. Writing is a process. The obstacles you face are part of the process, and there is not a one-size-fits-all answer to what will help your writing fall into place.
Here are 7 ways to make writer’s block work for you:
- Step away for a bit and come back later. I know that seems obvious, but it is important.
- Listen to music.
- Unplug from technology. Our culture is inundated with entertainment, and it can be difficult to hear the correct voice when you are so immersed in all the other voices.
- Read a good book or short story (focusing on authors you really admire).
- Tinker with poetry. Haikus are a personal favorite for me, and poetry can have a fascinating way of bringing ideas to you.
- Read a dictionary. Words have personalities; sometimes a single word can spark an entire story… or chapter… or book.
- Reading books like Boris Fishman’s series on writing can help you think about your story/character/plot from a different angle. Realize that not everything you write will be included in your polished piece, but it should all be written down regardless. You need to get to know your plot and your characters well.
Most importantly, keep writing. Strive to write something every day, and certainly never give up. If you have the passion for writing, it is for a reason. Press on!
Here is a free downloadable of a fantastic Creative Writing Exercise!
Jess Woods graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor's degree in English Education and from Arizona State University with a Master's degree in English. She began her career teaching in a public high school; however, since 2013, she has been teaching middle school and high school English courses online. Jess is a life-long reader and writer. She comes alive in the company of words and music, and she has a passion for literature that reaches through every part of her being. She believes wholeheartedly that each person has a relevant voice and perspective, and she eagerly teaches her students to embrace their individual voices by exploring their own thoughts and learning to confidently articulate them. It is her desire to encourage growth in all students (regardless of their love for English courses…or lack thereof). She considers it a tremendous success if she can awaken a love of literature and/or composition in her students. Jess currently resides in Alabama with her pastor-husband, Josh and their three kids. They also have a lot of animals and plants. While reading and writing are clearly on the top of her hobby list, Jess also enjoys all things musical, cooking competition shows, gardening, hiking, and traveling.