OPINION – Five tips to get through writer’s block
It happens to everyone: Whether you’re writing an essay, your first novel or your latest deadline story, you’ve been a victim of writer’s block.
For those who can’t seem to find a cure, here are five proven tactics to get you out of your bind and back to writing.
- Create an outline.
What’s the story going to be about? Create a skeleton of your piece and figure out the major points. From there, fill in the details: What do you want to say? Are there any keywords or phrases that you want to incorporate? Creating a detailed outline will help you connect your thoughts and separate important ideas.
2. Give yourself plenty of time.
No one likes writing under stress. And if you have writer’s block, your anxiety, combined with a tight deadline, won’t produce nice prose. Give yourself a few days to work on your piece, and don’t wait until the last minute to hammer out the story. Details take time.
If you’re trying to find a topic, what better inspiration is there than other people’s work? No. I’m not telling you to plagiarize. Read the next chapter in your novel, or pick up this morning’s paper. See what the breaking news stories are, and figure out if there’s a new angle or unanswered questions. If you’re reading classics, focus on the flow of the prose.
4. Find a place to write.
Sometimes a venue change helps us clear our heads so we can figure out what to say when we’re at a loss.
If you’re stuck staring at a blank wall, switch things up and sit outside, in a coffee shop or anywhere with a new setting. The best inspiration can be found when we decide to uproot our usual routine and find new places to put pen to paper.
5. Don’t be too hard on yourself.
Writer’s block affects everyone. Remember that you won’t be stuck forever.
The more freedom you give yourself to be creative, the easier it will be to get out of your rut and get back to writing. Think outside the box, and don’t discredit your ideas.