Tips for Writer’s Block

Every artistic type experiences blocks. Whether they last for a few minutes or years, blocks are defeating. Here are some things that work for me. Most of the time.

1) Read a bad book.
You will end up thinking: this got published? I can do better than that.

2) Read a good book.
You will end up being inspired to live up to its greatness. Try not to read too good of a book, though. You might end up feeling deflated.

3) Watch an excellent movie.
In a nice theater so that you are fully immersed. Although it’s a different type of media, movies had to be written too. Sometimes I get an adrenaline rush off a really great story.

4) Take a short road trip alone.
At least an hour long, two is good. If it’s too long you will end up bored and stunted. Listen to loud music or nothing at all. Let your mind wander in the direction of your project.

5) Work on a different creative project.
Write something in a completely different genre and/or form. Or paint. Or play an instrument or sing. Whatever else floats your boat.

6) Share it with your “fan.”
I usually have a good friend who is my very own personal fangirl. Someone who loves me, likes to read, but probably isn’t a writer herself. She isn’t there to critique it (ask questions and find plot-holes, yes) rather she is there to say “hell, yeah! Where’s the next chapter?”

Things that don’t work for me.

1) Walk the dog.
For one thing, my dog is nuts and does not behave on a leash. For another, my anxiety also presents as mild agoraphobia.

2) Set a deadline.
Self-imposed deadlines do shit for me. Unless the deadline has dire consequences like grades or graduation or money, I ignore it.

3) Set a word-count or page goal.
If I don’t meet it, I end up beating myself up horribly and resist trying the next day. Look, writing is technically my job but if it feels like a job, I won’t do it.

Just always keep in mind, if nothing works? It is okay. It is okay to walk away for awhile. Your muse will return.

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