All writers have experienced the disheartening sense of creative bankruptcy that is writer’s block. The good news is that you don’t have to wait in a state of passivity until it disappears. Here are four tips for getting over the proverbial hump:
1. Read. When I’m feeling totally uninspired, I read. I read all kinds of things – novels, blog posts, short stories, news articles, song lyrics, poems, etc. Once I begin to truly appreciate the infinite ways in which language can be utilised to convey a message or tell a story, I start itching to further develop my own style of communicating through words.
2. Write. No, I haven’t totally lost my mind and forgotten what the title of this post is. But really, sometimes the only way out is through. Unless you’ve truly and completely lost the ability to string a sentence together (in which case you should stop reading this post and call a doctor immediately) then the only thing standing between you and some words on a page is the fear of writing something bad. So, face your fear, write something bad, and eventually you’ll be rewarded for your diligence with inspiration.
3. Do Something New. This could be as simple as going to a new coffee shop, taking up a new hobby, learning a new skill, meeting a new person or visiting a new place. Newness is stimulating and can cause us to notice things we may have previously overlooked. Sometimes a simple change of scenery can be just the ticket for recharging those creative batteries.
4. Stay Calm. Writer’s block can be an extremely humbling experience. That’s a good thing – humility makes us strive to be better writers. Don’t get too freaked out by your current lack of creative energy. Keep to your end of the bargain (see No. 2) and this too shall pass.
How do you deal with writer’s block? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!
Photo courtesy of Neal Sanche on Flickr.