One effective strategy I discovered a couple days ago is to talk about the subject I want to write about into my computer's voice recorder, then play it back, write down the words and edit from there.
What do you do to get past writers block?
9:03 pm on Jan 22, 2011 (gmt 0)
Actually, I never have one. Writing is like thinking. Thinking is a process that starts when you wake up and stops when you go to sleep. Whatever the subject is, you have certain thoughts about it. Just write them down, even it seems useless. If I had to write something about a boring topic e.g. housekeeping, I can imagine my thoughts would be something like this "That damn housekeeping, I really hate it. It comes back any time and you have to start all over again. When I think of all other things I could do in that time ... oh ... It is better however, not to focus on it, I have to do something to prevent my house from becoming a mess. Would be nice if someone invented some more machines to save some time ... etc. ....." Focussing on it, I have all kind of thoughts. I could interview some people on the subject, I could search some facts about the history of housekeeping and the history of time-savers like diswashers, vacuumcleaners, etc. My advise would be: sit back, relax and write down anything you think about the subject you have to write about. The process of writing has a certain kind of influence on the dealing with problems. I'm no brain expert, so can't tell you how it works but it absolutely has a positive influence.
12:55 am on Jan 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
I like how you think about it. Breaking down writing into sections and topics makes it more of a thought translation.
Something I'll keep in mind (no pun intended) and share...Thank you.
7:18 am on Jan 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
There's Writer's Block and then there's Confused At the Moment, and then there's I'm Sooo Tired of the Same Thing.
First will go away when the brain relaxes. Second will go away when the brain is directed. There's no cure for the Third. :(
Writing is like good health... if you don't exercise every day skills and ability both go to pot.
2:06 pm on Jan 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
Being so tired of the same thing ... I don't write for a living, so that makes probably a difference. Am what you call "between jobs" for some reasons. At the moment I work as a volunteer with two small companies. I'm making a new website for them, which means sometimes I work at building the site, an other moment I'm busy with writing text and also make and edit photos. It's the kind of job I would wish for myself in the future, but I would be really lucky to find something like that. More probable the job will concentrate on a certain aspect. When your daily work is writing, I can imagine the "I'm so tired of the same thing" feeling. Even the most creative work can get boring at times. I'm afraid I don't know a cure for that one, too. Have a short break, that's all I can come up with.
2:59 pm on Jan 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
Most people who have problems writing simply try to hard. If I need to write something I always imagine someone standing right next to me whom I would have to explain what I want to write about. Then I write as I would speak.
That only works however when you know what you want to write about and doesn't help find a topic.
1:48 am on Feb 1, 2011 (gmt 0)
Change gears. Go do something else related to your business.
Example: Take out the garbage, organize your contacts, go through old emails, etc.
It's amazing how refreshed you'll be once you've addressed those boring tasks.
I also try writing later in the day as well. Oddly enough I'm 10x more creative at 10pm than 10am lol.
2:40 am on Feb 1, 2011 (gmt 0)
These are all great suggestions. @tangor, great way to conceptualize it. I've made it a priority to write at least one blog post per day.
@webprutser - i'd say about 30% of my job is now rising, a percentage that will increase in the future, so I've gotta get the right foundations now!
@jecasc - personally the most salient point I read, our writing styles, or maybe the way we think about writing, are very the same.
@BuzzBomb - agreed, but sometimes I'm writing on a fake deadline to get more traffic (the earlier the post, the more traffic) so it's hard to do that...BUT I'm trying to plan ahead more- scheduling blog posts the day before, etc, so I can be more relaxed when I write.
2:41 am on Feb 1, 2011 (gmt 0)
is now writing*
2:49 am on May 3, 2011 (gmt 0)
is writing now and thinking for gad
6:25 pm on May 21, 2011 (gmt 0)
There is no such thing as writer's block. I was a professional writer for more than a decade. There is: too tired (solution: nap); I need a break (take a walk, wash the dishes); and this is boring (switch gears, write something else.) There is: I don't understand the topic (research or interview). There are certainly other reasons for not being able to write in the moment, but those reasons are their own reasons with their own solutions. Writer's block is a crutch. Seriously, taking a walk or a bath or some other sort of break gives your brain a little rest, and you can be back at the keyboard within a half hour, filled with new words to write.
5:07 pm on May 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
I generally write down whatever comes to my mind and leave it at that for some time. Taking a break works wonders - listen to some music, walk about or do something else that you like doing! Always leaves me rejuvenated, ready to get back to business!
5:17 pm on May 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
Great tips. It's been more than six months since this thread started and I can't remember the last time I had writers block. Or maybe I just learned how to take better breaks. :)
9:09 pm on May 23, 2011 (gmt 0)
I just saw a smart blog post on this topic: "There's No Such Thing As Writer's Block". [thisistrue.com...]
4:31 pm on Jun 3, 2011 (gmt 0)
But i don't understand what is the need of doing double work, that is recording and then listening to it and editing it? Instead, straight away start writing matter from your mind, after reading about it from any reference.
11:53 pm on Jun 7, 2011 (gmt 0)
Always carry a notepad or voice recorder and write down as soon as thought comes to your head. You often get great ideas in the most unexpected of times which you then cannot recall when you get back home.