Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Break Down that Writer's Block

The project I'm working on currently is one I wrote for NanoWrimo last November. Right now I'm typing up what I wrote then so I can move forward with the middle and end of the project. I'm quickly approaching the place where I will have to start creating the rest of the story and I'm getting nervous. I have no idea where it's going to go next or how to continue and finish the project.

So, from the Strictly Writing blog I bring you 10 Tips to Trounce Writer's Block. Building on Caroline Rance's tips I'll try the following things when I reach that terrifying point:

1. Fool your brain: Just the act of writing can get your brain in the right mode and make it easier to keep going. So, start with something you've already written and pretty soon you'll be writing something new. I'm sort of already doing this by typing my hand written opening scenes so hopefully the new material will just flow out of the already established.

2. Do the fun bit: For me to take advantage of this tip I need to have some idea of where my characters are going. I do have some vague ideas of important scenes, action, and decisions, so I will try writing these parts when I don't know what else to do. I haven't ever done this before, so that might be interesting.

3. Tell the dog: I don't have a dog or even a pet plant, but I do have sisters who I feel comfortable discussing things with. They also already know I'm working on this project so it will be easier to tell them out loud what I'm thinking.

4. Change of scene: I've tried switching from longhand to computer for first drafts and I find it difficult. So maybe I'll try finding a new place to write - the bookstore across the street or the cafe on the next block over. It is way too hot to try anything outside.

5. Get off your backside: I have been trying to find new ways to exercise that I actually enjoy and I found one - my Wii Fit. It's nice because you can build your own workout and it's more like games than 'work'ing out. Sometimes to write well you have to stop writing for a bit.

6. Shoot the crap-censor: I hereby vow that I will lock away my inner editor when I am creating new material.

7. Don't be yourself: This is actually something I do in other parts of my life without realizing it. Pretending to be someone who is focused, motivated, and talented can rub off on the real you after a while. I still need to figure out how to make it work for laundry and dishes, though.

8. Clock on: I will commit to writing for a specific amount of time to force myself to work. Then I get a reward. Usually chocolate is involved.

9. Tiny goals: By setting tiny goals you can easily accomplish you give yourself a sense of achievement which then motivates you to accomplish more goals.

10. Wait it out: Just relax and believe that like other things in life writing will have ups and downs. And wouldn't it be boring if it didn't?

For additional details see the original post at Strictly Writing. Thanks Caroline Rance!

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