Rhonda Bowen is a guest blogger for The Word On The Street. This is the second post of her monthly, guest column exploring her road to becoming a published author. Click here to read her first post. Are you interested in being a guest blogger for The Word On The Street? Pitch us your ideas by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hitting the Wall
It’s that dreaded moment we all fear. You try to deny it, but after hours staring at a blinking curser you’re convinced: you have writer’s block. It’s as unavoidable as the flu and almost as unpredictable, lasting anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks. Symptoms include, lack of inspiration, insipid paragraphs, and an addiction to the delete button. There is no foolproof cure, but here are a few remedies that work for me:
Tip #1: Don’t write
Sometimes the way to get rid of writer’s block is to walk away. I know, this is a scary idea, especially when a deadline lies in the near future and your editor is fishing for your first draft. But taking a break for a few hours or even a few days can help clear your mind and make space for inspiration.
Tip#2: Go back to the beginning
Sometimes the clue to finding out where you should go next is in looking back at where it all started. Rereading the beginning of your work can remind you of the story you wanted to tell in the first place and help you know where to go next.
Tip# 3: Do some more research
In a recent project, one of my characters was a high end pastry chef. After a week of not being able to write anything new I decided to do some more research on the field and ended up on YouTube watching Cake Couture episodes on Wedding TV. After just a couple hours I figured out how to make my own wedding cake and where to go next with my story. Sometimes a little research is all the inspiration you need.
Writer’s block can be stressful, but don’t let it paralyze you. Whether you choose to wait it out or fight it off is up to you. What are your tips for dealing with writer’s block?