How to End Writer’s Block Once and For All
The muse of inspiration is the most precious asset for artists of all kinds. With writer’s block always looming in the background, it’s no wonder why so many writers become superstitious about their craft. All writers develop rituals and quirks that keep them going, but if writer’s block hits they become stuck, stagnant and even depressed. Yet, writer’s block can be beat. Stick to these four simple tips, and you’ll be on your way to beating writer’s block for good.
Create a Routine
Truman Capote, the author of In Cold Blood, was so superstitious that he wouldn’t stay in a hotel room if the phone number included the number 13, never left more than three cigarettes butts in an ashtray, and never began or ended a piece of writing on a Friday. While not every writer is that superstitious, many can admit that they are protective of their craft and may develop idiosyncrasies.
My advice is to find your routine and stick to it. Haruki Murakami and Toni Morrison get up at 4:00 am to write, while other writers like Franz Kafka and George Orwell were night owls. Most of us have to create a routine that accommodates our full time job and our kids. Toni Morrison had two children to take care when she started writing and uses the routine every since. It’s difficult at first, but you must be selfish about writing in order to get it done. Make alone time for you to write, even if you have to form it around a hectic schedule.
In you want to produce first-rate work, you have to have discipline. Daily routines aren’t easy, but they’re worth it. Discipline means doing something you don’t want to do in order to accomplish a goal. Whether you want to write a blog post or write a novel, you must dedicate yourself to your craft even when you don’t want to.
Not even writer’s block is a reason to give up your routine. When you have writer’s block, your schedule is more important than ever. Perhaps you write nothing, or perhaps you write a dozen pages that you tear up and throw in the trash. Whatever circumstance you’re in, you must keep in mind that you can and will eventually overcome it.
Don’t Think too Hard
It’s a common mistake, but think too hard and your writer’s block will become a vicious cycle. Some people fear that writer’s block is hiding just around the corner and ready to pounce at any moment. But this fear only makes the situation worse. Anxiety about writer’s block distracts you from your work. You become worried about the writer’s block instead of focusing on your writing. When you find yourself at a loss at how to progress your story or what your next blog post should be about, don’t think about writer’s block. Take a deep breath, take a walk, take a nap, go to the gym or do whatever you need to do to take your mind off it for a while. Instead of worrying about the negative, be confident that your work will progress. You may even need to distance yourself for a while and approach it with a fresh mind. Ernest Hemingway intentionally stopped writing during his daily routine right when he thought it was getting good. He believed it game him the fire to continue working the next day. It may take days, weeks or months but you will get through it.
Experience a Change of Scenery
Sometimes what you need is a new experience to refresh your brain and change your perspective. Life is full of creative content just waiting for you to find it. There are many writers that will tell you that the greatest education comes from experience so take advantage of an outlet that serves you. This may involve a vacation, changing your day job, volunteering, making new friends or something else. Do something new to stimulate your brain to think creatively to solve or complete a task. You may want to take up a hobby like crochet or rock climbing to strengthen your brainpower. You never know what you might get out of it!
What are your thoughts on writer’s block? How have you overcome writer’s block in the past? Share your thoughts below so that we can fight writer’s block together.