For authors, we aspire to become the best of the best in terms of writing. We live, breathe, and write surreal characters and fantasies; our words become songs that flow on the blank pages so smoothly like silk- at least, we would if we could, right?
Writer’s block is a disease. It festers and rots our creativity; it stunts our growth process and leaves us struggling to come up with sentences that make sense. It leaves our brains to overheat and burn out and overall becomes a pain in the ass. But what if I told you the secret to un-blocking that writer’s block?
But what exactly is writer’s block?
To put it simply, writer’s block is the inability to put words on paper. Let’s say you’re in the middle of writing an article, an essay, or even a novel. Your hands are furiously moving as you get into the rhythm of forming sentences . . . aaaaaand it’s gone. Your mind suddenly goes blank and the consistent flow of writing comes to a screeching halt. What happened? Writer’s block, that’s what happened.
So how can writers overcome this frustrating situation?
- Get Up or Get Out
Sitting in one spot for too long can hinder the writing process, plus it can lead to bodily discomfort. It’s best to stand and stretch or even better to go for a walk. Diverting your attention with physical movement from that temporary block can help reset that original creativity. Take a hike, walk your dog, tune into a yoga channel on YouTube- increase your movement. Hell, go take a nap. You might even dream of something.
- Write More
Hold up, how do you write more when you can’t write? Like this. Change the topic and write about something different. Grab a journal or even a sheet of paper and write whatever pops up in your head. If that’s too difficult a task, observe and jot down your surroundings. What can you see? Hear? Smell? Additional writing can help relieve stress and clear up room in your brain for fresher ideas.
Reading is like a dish; how will you know if you like it if you never try it? Whether it’s a book, a magazine article or a Reddit post, reading can allow the brain to reset on ideas and even formulate new ideas. Reading can be a relatively easy task. Find something that you enjoy and read about it or find something new and attempt to read that instead. It should serve as an inspiration to write; DO NOT PLAGIARIZE. Seriously, don’t read something just to simply copy it. Your professors, editors and publishers will NOT thank you for stealing work.
Writing is like exercise; as you exercise more, your muscles will need the occasional breaks and periods of rest. Your brain needs rest just the same. Forcing yourself to write will undoubtedly lead to a continuous cycle of writer’s block. By allowing the body and brain to rest, you allow yourself the energy to find mistakes, correct errors and continue that work flow that you’ve been needing.
- Never Give Up
Most importantly, be kind to yourself. Writer’s block is not an instant sign of failure; it’s merely an obstacle. And like most obstacles, it can be overcome. Practice makes perfect and if it doesn’t work, just try again. One of the worst things that can occur for a writer is having a completed work that never gets to see the light of publishing. Fear is normal, so is failure. There will be times when others will not see your work under the same light as you. The most important thing a writer can do for themselves is to write for themselves.
Writing is empowerment.
And there you have it. Hopefully, these tips will help you overcome that writer’s block that’s been congesting your thought process. Now go write and have fun writing.