Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Getting Through the Rough Times - Ideas to Help With Writers' Block

The last few months have been a rollercoaster ride, and I’ve been so focused on the blog tour that everything else has fallen to the wayside. The tour ends on the 28th and I’m actually quite sad about that. Although it’s been a huge amount of work, it’s also been really fun.

Because I’ve put so much energy into the tour, lately I’ve been struggling to get any kind of creative writing done. I’m in a bit of a slump and I really don’t want to be there. I’m loathed to call it writers’ block, because I don’t believe I have it. I think it’s more a lack of confidence than anything else. Now that people have read Fall For Me and actually liked it, I’m scared for what’s to come next. I know what I want to happen in the next part of Grace’s story, but is it what the reader wants? And can I get it out fast enough?

I’ve spent many hours contemplating these questions, and I think the answer is yes—and no. Things may not turn out how everyone wants them to—and if I’ve learnt anything in this process it’s that you can’t please everyone—but for me as a reader, and a writer, I want a good story. So, that’s what I’m going to try and deliver. As for the time frame, I’ve given myself until the end of the year. I’m hoping it will be enough, but if it isn’t, then it isn’t.

I’ve written 33k+ words of Fight For Me, but I realised the other day that it’s just not working. This has me down a bit because I’ve done so much work already, but I made the decision a couple of days ago to let it lie for a bit, wait until the tour was completely over and then come back to it.

I know I’m not the only one to suffer a bout of self-doubt—ok, you can call it writers’ block if you really want to—so I thought I’d list some ideas to help with getting through these rough patches.

  • Set your current WIP aside and work on something else. It could be a new idea you’ve been tossing around in your head, or another WIP you haven’t touched for a while.
  • If you’re stuck, move to a different scene in your story, or write the ending. It doesn’t have to be what’s eventually going to happen, but it will free up your ideas and hopefully get you over the bump.
  • Write from a different POV. Choose one of your character’s that isn’t the MC and write a scene through their eyes.
  • Work on character profiles. Take one of your secondary characters and get to know them better.
  • Pick up the closest object to you and write a descriptive paragraph about it. Describe it in as much detail as possible. Have fun with it!
  • If you’re really, really stuck, walk away. Read for a while instead of working on your own writing. I try to always find time to read every day. Choose a book and read it until you’ve finished. Don’t write in between reading sessions; just enjoy someone else’s work for a while. I’m currently doing this and I’m still reeling from a book I finished two days ago. That’s the effect I want to have on my readers!
  • And finally, drink lots of tea. Tea fixes everything!

I’d love to know what you do to get yourself through a rough patch. Leave me a comment with your best tip.

Now, I’m off to take some of my own advice.
K x

2 comments:

  1. Ugh! Writers block is the bane of my existence...however,I find a good workout sometimes helps - going to the gym and mindlessly doing weights or a focused pilates class helps me a lot. Also, if I'm really getting bent out of shape in the middle of writing I jump in the shower. I always think better in the shower LOL...oh yes, and pulling out the crayons and colouring in with my kids works really well as well. Colouring in is not just for kiddies and is wonderfully therapeutic. Hugs hun :) lve Suse

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