Writers, am I right? We all know and, sometimes, fear these artistic creatures who can bring so much joy to the world and yet struggle, at times (most of the time) with their self-confidence, accentuated sadness, and, most importantly, the blank page!
Standing in front of a blank page demanding to be filled with witty, profound, enthralling, fun, mind-blowing, and even mentality-changer strings of well-chosen letters is no easy task!
Ask every writer, and they will tell you that writing is not so much about talent as it is about hard work, and that particular state of mind.
That state of mind that takes control over their fingers and leads the writer on the highest peak of success, into the abyss of failure, or, often, it just keeps them stuck in the purgatory of not sureness.
And as if writing is not complicated enough, sometimes the most dreaded thing happens the block. As if not knowing if what you write is good or bad, writers also have to deal with being unable to write a single word. Why? Oh, why?
But what is causing writer’s block?
As most writers know, writer’s block can be a frustrating experience. It can feel like you can’t seem to get the words out. It can feel like you’re stuck in a rut.
Lack of inspiration
Many times, writer’s block is caused by a lack of inspiration. If you’re not getting ideas for your story or article, it might be because you’re not exploring any new territory…or your muse is on vacation. Greece sounds lovely this time of year!
If you’re stuck, it might be helpful to look at your favourite authors and see what they’re doing well. What do their stories or articles have in common? What makes them successful?
Once you have a good idea of what makes your favourite authors successful, you can emulate those elements. Or schedule a Zoom call with your muse.
Lack of motivation
If you’re not feeling inspired to write, it might be because you don’t have the motivation to do it.
Sometimes, it can be helpful to set a goal for yourself. If you don’t have any ideas for your story yet, try setting a goal to come up with at least one idea by the end of the day.
Once you have an idea, you can develop it into a story.
If you’re working on a project beyond your current level of expertise, it can be hard to develop new ideas. Your health should always come first.
Instead of trying to develop new ideas, focusing on developing the ones you already have might be helpful.
Once you have a solid foundation for your story, you can explore new territory.
Lack of proper tools
It can be hard to get started if you don’t have the right tools for the job.
Some of the most common tools that can help you overcome writer’s block are a journal and a pencil.
By keeping a journal, you can track your progress and stay motivated. A pencil can also be helpful because it can help you to develop your ideas into a story.
There is no greater power than the power of a pencil.
Lack of time
Sometimes, writer’s block is caused by a lack of time. If you don’t have enough time to write your story or article, it might be helpful to split it into smaller chunks.
Instead of writing a whole article in one sitting, try breaking it down into smaller paragraphs.
How to overcome writer’s block
So, you have writer’s block. You’re stuck and can’t seem to get the words out. It’s frustrating, especially since you know how good your writing can be. I get what you’re going through.
But don’t despair. You can do a few things to overcome writer’s block and get your writing done.
Make a list of your goals for writing.
What do you want to accomplish? What do you want to say? What do you want your readers to get out of your work?
Once you have a list of your goals, you can start to focus on writing specifically toward those goals.
Break your writing down into small tasks.
Start with one sentence. Just one. Then keep going until you have a complete sentence.
You need a sentence to unlock your creativity and see it flow on the page. Please start thinking about what you could put between the words to make it a complete paragraph.
Take a break.
Take a break if you find yourself stuck after trying one of the other tips.
Get up and walk around. Take a nap. Eat some chocolate. Play with your dog. Whatever it takes to clear your head and return to work with fresh eyes.
But skip the TikTok. It is never just one video.
Start over from the beginning if you can’t get a sentence out. This may sound not easy, but it’s a great way to get your writing done.
By starting from scratch, you can be sure that you are focusing on the most important aspects of your work.
Use your imagination.
I know! It sounds like such a cliché. Well, cliches are cliches because they’re true!
If you find yourself stuck, start thinking about what your work might look like if it were published. What font should it be in? What colour should the margins be? What could the cover look like?
Once you have a basic idea of your work, you can flesh it out.
If you find yourself struggling to get your writing done, there is no shame in getting help. Well, don’t go to a psychiatrist (just yet!).
There are plenty of online writing courses and programs that can help you get your work done. Writing coaches are always a good idea if you feel uncomfortable taking a class or using a program.
Keep a positive attitude.
The last thing you want to do is let writer’s block get the best of you. You just bought that laptop, haven’t you?!
Instead of smashing everything you can find or slipping into a catatonic state, keep a positive attitude and think about your progress.
After all, writing is a process, not a destination.