Tuesday, April 2, 2013

A tip for those with writer's block

photo credit: pedrosimoes7 via photopin cc

If you have ever experienced writer's block, then you know it is a real condition. I get so frustrated me when I hear people say that it isn't real, because I'll bet you ten to one they have never experienced it themselves.Writer's block is like being stuck in a dry well hoping for water, wanting water, waking up every day ready to see a full well, but getting nothing. When someone makes the statement that, "Writer's block isn't real," I want to say, "How do you know, if you've never experience it?" 

I do think it can be avoided as well as helped. But first let's look at some of the causes of writer's block. Stress. Family issues. Financial issues. Emotional issues such as depression. Many times, these are combined into one, or are causes of each other. Whatever it is, once it gets going, it's hard to escape. So, you have to learn how not to let life interrupt your writing schedule.

Find a place. A place all your own. A room, a designated area, a desk, maybe just have a laptop that is all yours. But find it and honor it, and make sure the people around you will honor it too. 

Find a special time to write. Are you more creative in the morning? In the afternoon? Late at night? Choose at time and stick with it. Don't wait for the right time, because it will never come. Writing is a habit, and needs habitual circumstances. So find the time, and keep it.

Keep a journal. A creative mind is like a strand of Christmas lights and can often get tangled up with the slightest of interruptions. Our life, our problems, all those ideas, sentences, characters, dialogue, plot! It's a lot to keep in order. If you allow your life's stresses to get tangled up with your creative ideas, it's going to end up being a knotted mess. So get it out. Sit down every day before your writing session and let out your fears, your ideas, your hopes, your stresses and just see how much better your mind works!

Write a little every day. One sentence leads to a paragraph. A paragraph leads to a page. A page leads to a chapter, and then a whole book. There's a lot of pressure when approaching a manuscript when you have the mindset that you have to get it all done right now. You can't! It isn't possible! But you can write one sentence at a time. To be honest, that's the secret of writing: to write one sentence at a time until you reach the end. That's it. There's no magic. No hidden tricks. It's all about perseverance and trust. Trust yourself. You can do it. You can.

One last thing that I like to do is track my progress. I use a free site (though donations are accepted) called Writetrack and it lets me enter my daily word count with an overall goal in mind. It's funny how competitive I am with myself, but hey, it works! You can also post your daily progress on twitter to encourage all your friends. Or to show off. : )

And remember, be kind to yourself. The biggest factor in writer's block is the disbelief that we have the ability to create. You do. It's there. Remember to love yourself, and to to love the precess of writing. Make it fun. Make it a habit. And the next thing you know, you'll be holding a completed manuscript. 

Thanks for reading and the best of luck to you!


  1. Amy, good advice. I find keeping a 'page-a-day' diary helps. I write what we'eve achieved/not achieved in the course of the day even if it does seem the most boring stuff on earth - it's surprising where different ideas will spring from. I think the most important bit is to make it fun and a bit of discipline. Wishing you all the best with your new book xx

  2. Good advice for any task. The thousand mile journey still begins with the discipline of the first step.

  3. I find stress being the biggest culprit. When I let it go and ignore the pressure, an idea always flows.

    When will your new book be out, Amy?

    1. I can't really say. If WiDo takes it on, which it may not and I can't blame them since the first book has not sold that well, then it would be a year at least. We'll just have to see . . . I am rather nervous about it, but again, we'll see what happens. : )

  4. Excellent advice, Amy.Discipline and belief in yourself -- indispensable. I am always amazed at how one word leads to another and then another -- now matter how worried I am when I start...


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