Writer’s Block. Easily a writer’s biggest nightmare, most avoided condition, and most frustrating situation. Every writer has experienced the dreadful feeling of writer’s block: that moment when you stare at a blank page for too long, or sit in front of a computer screen, and somehow end up reading your Facebook news feed instead.
Almost anything, it seems, can cause that particular mix of fear and frustration upon confronting the blank page. Just as the reasons for writer’s block vary, there is also more than one way to deal with it. The list below is in no way complete: take it as a list of suggestions, things that have worked for some people. Trying new things will at least shake things up, which is the first step toward breaking out of your block.
1. Keep a Schedule!
Show up every day at the same time, and your muse will learn to do the same. Graham Greene famously wrote 500 words, and only 500 words, every morning. That is only about two pages of writing per day, but just by keeping that schedule Greene wrote and published over 30 books.
2. Don’t be too hard on yourself.
In Walter Mosley’s words, “If you want to be a writer, you have to write every day… You don’t go to a well once but daily. You don’t skip a child’s breakfast or forget to wake up in the morning…”
So, turn the critical brain off. There is a time and place for criticism: it’s called editing, and that’s our job.
If fear is the basis for your writer’s block, you can only imagine what panicking will cause. Again, having some kind of schedule can help eliminate anxiety. The less you have to think about what you’re doing, the better. Sometimes you have to play games with yourself to circumvent your fear.
We’ll continue with our last 4 tips next week! Stay tuned.
When you are ready to invest in the services of a professional editor, contact us here at Detroit Ink Publishing! We are ready to work with you!