We’ve all been there. Staring at a blank page, trying to write something, but it’s either really bad or it’s nothing at all. Writer’s block, the menace of us all. What’s the best way to fight it?
The best way, of course, it to just write. I’m sure you have heard this tip many times before, but it’s true. Sit down at a computer or a paper and just write the first thing that comes. Write for 30 minutes. Sure, the writing will probably suck, but it’s the only effective way to beat the block.
“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration; the rest of us get up and go to work.” — Stephen King
There are some other tips to help you on the way.
Writer’s block can be induced by unnecessary distraction when writing. Social media, e-mail, calls from a family member, thinking about groceries… Be sure to put yourself in an environment that allows you to focus solely on your writing.
Jot down a few ideas for a short story. Be sure to get as many of them out of your system as possible. This helps you come up with good ideas, which are usually buried below layers and layers of bad, cliche concepts.
Find a local competition, or join one on the internet. This imposes a deadline on your and might force you to write and revise.
Constrained Writing & Challenges
When I experienced my first ever writer’s block, I started the Chronicles Writing Challenge, in which I wrote a short story (inspired by a writing prompt) each day for 120 days. By forcing myself to complete this long challenge, I broke out of the block.
Constrained writing might also help – setting yourself some rules on your writing. For example, the Alphabet Story Challenge, where you write a 26-sentence long story, each sentence starting with the next letter of the alphabet.
It might help you to get back to your original inspiration, which is almost always reading. Go back to your favorite books, or pick up something new.
Take a Break
Finally, if nothing else helps, take a week-long pause (if you can). Clear your head and relax.
As a last tip, be sure to remember one thing. When you write, however bad the piece is, it doesn’t really matter. There’s always going to be the next one. And it’s going to be a bit better.
How do you fight writer’s block? Be sure to post any more tips to the comments!