life · writing

My 5 Ways to Combat Writer’s Block

When I lack inspiration, I have a few fall-back options that will usually get the creative side of my brain back in gear. Right now, I need inspiration for this blog post. The inspiration that came to me was to write about things I do when I lack inspiration. Have I said inspiration too many times yet?

5) Read novels not in my genre. It need not be said that I love to read. When searching for that oomph to get me back into a writerly frame of mind, I like to read my favorite books with awesome characters and setting. It makes me want to write fiction that well, too.

4) Go for a walk with my dog. Matthew is a stubborn dog who likes to pull on his leash and scare cats, so walking him effectively takes my mind off everything, and gives me a much-needed break.

I come back from the walk not so much refreshed, but desperate to do anything other than fight with my dog. Working at my desk is like heaven in comparison.

3) Make book covers. I like to have an idea of what would go on the cover of my novel, mostly because it helps me envision the book actually being done. It’s still in an artistic medium, it still has everything to do with my novel, but it’s not writing.

When I made the cover for Angel from Hell, I really just wanted a picture of a girl with a sword. But the whole suit of armor and tattoo thing ended up sparking new ideas. I ditched the cover-making in a matter of minutes and went back to writing.

2) Brainstorm with my sister. I’m lucky in this regard; I have two sisters who love fiction writing just as much as I do. One of them has a desk perpendicular to mine, so all I have to do for a brainstorm partner is look up from my computer.

Talking/thinking aloud helps me get things straightened out in my head, which in turn helps me get things straightened out on paper. I had an epiphany while thinking aloud just the other day. I can’t put it to use yet, but when May 5 gets here, look out! ^^

1) Complain. Yep, I said it. My number one way to combat writer’s block is to whine and complain. It’s like therapy for me. I lie on my bed and complain to all who dare to venture within earshot. At first, it feels nice to blame everything under the sun for my problems.

A few minutes – okay, maybe ten or twenty minutes – and then I start to feel like the laziest writer in the world. Feeling guilty overcomes my feeling abused. I rolled out of bed, park my bottom in my desk chair, scoot into my desk, and next thing you know, I’m typing out a few words.

Those few words lead to another few words, and voila! I’m off.

I’m not even going to pretend my methods would be helpful to anyone, so I’m curious. How do you get rid of your writer’s block?

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