It happens to all of us. Sometimes, no matter how motivated we are to work, we hit a wall and don’t know what to write next. Or we know what we want to write, but for whatever reason we struggle to get it on paper. When this happens to me, I have a few tactics for working around it:
- I go back and edit what I’ve already written.
- I use ALL CAPS to mark places where I need to write a new section, literally filling a few lines with something like WRITE A SCENE HERE ABOUT XX. Then I move on.
- If I come up with an idea for something to write but there’s not a place for it in the book just yet, I write it in a new document named “To add in later.” When writer’s block hits, I reference this document to see if I can insert any of the ideas into what I’ve already written, or to see if I can create a new scene that includes them. To keep this list fresh, I carry sticky notes with me at all times and constantly make notes to myself, including when I wake up in the middle of the night with an idea. When I forget my sticky notes, I send myself text messages.
Clearing time in your schedule and mustering the creative energy to write on a regular basis isn’t easy, so when you get stuck during these times, it can be extremely frustrating. However, you can still be productive if you’re willing to be flexible with how you work. The above tricks help me combat the occasional bout of writer’s block, so I hope you find them useful. It may be in a roundabout way, but at least I’m being productive, which means my book is one step closer to completion!