Monday, April 27, 2015

A to Z - "W" is for Writer's Block

So you're writing along and you come to a place where you don't know what happens next to your characters. You can't find a solution to the scene. It ends. You close your work and walk away. But nothing comes that day, or the next or the next week.

You have a block.

There are so many ways to cure Writer's Block.

Here my faves.

1. Work on something else. Never. Stop. Writing. So what if you have to go blog for a few days to get the things on your mind out of the way?! Keep writing.

2. Focus on a different character. Perhaps the one giving you fits is stepping out of the limelight for a reason. Maybe your entire work should be voiced by another character as if the story you want to tell isn't really theirs to tell. Keep Writing.

3. Read. Pick up a book and get immersed in the story. Study what the author does to move scenes along, use dialogue, and other ways they craft the story. Take notes. Keep Writing.

4. Watch. Take a TV or movie break. Those are stories too. Take notes on the loopholes you find, the characters who intrigue you, and anything else that catches your fancy. Keep Writing.

5. Research. Maybe what you need is more detail. If you aren't really sure about the scene, the flaw that stops you could be in the details you don't know or understand. Interview people, read up, watch some documentaries, whatever you have to do to learn more. Keep Writing.

6. Get away for a while. Step back, maybe review your work for your own plot holes, but also take time to leave the work for a day or two. You can get burnt out. It happens. Give yourself a mini vacation or a treat. Then come back and write.

7. Listen. Music can alter your mood, tell stories, or enhance a piece of writing. Some people write better with music or establish CDs as soundtracks for their writing, lending the emotion they feel in the songs to their works. Listen to people talking and pick up their slang, cadence, hidden meanings, and write their dialogue down. Listen to your story read aloud. There may be glaring errors that need fixed.  Listen to your own thoughts and brainstorm ways around the troublesome part. Keep Writing.

These are just off the top of my head. Oh, use some writing prompts! Have you tried The Brainstormer? Or just serach for Writing Prompts.  Go to my new favorite site Ficlatté and write a few prompts for them (us), or use one to write a new story.

Search for 'cure writer's block' for more ideas and theories.

Keep Writing.

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