Writer’s block is the downfall to nearly every writer. Let me guess, you were on a writing streak several months ago then life got hectic. Now, you’re sitting at your computer, cracking your knuckles, and as you begin to type – nothing. The imaginative words, the funny characters and the interwoven plots have suddenly erased itself from your memory.
Usually, there are quick fixes to help boost your creativity. Writer’s block happens when a writer loses their way, is burnt out, can’t focus, or is just too busy. However, if you feel like your writer’s block is caused by something else, Mental Health Daily provided a list of reasons as to why your creativity might’ve diminished.
Now, if you don’t think you’re struggling with ADHD or drug abuse, here are 5 ways you can boost your creativity and defeat writer’s block:
1. Change your environment
If you’re always writing in the same spot at the same time, you might need a change of scenery. It can get pretty scary if you’re in your pajamas and the moon is starting to glow through your bedroom window and the sad ballads are singing through your headphones and all of a sudden you can’t write like you used to.
When your body gets comfortable, sometimes you need to awaken yourself by changing spots. Have you ever tried writing in public? Coffee shops are usually a go-to spot for most writers because they’re quiet and full of productive people. When you see a bunch of people typing away on their computers, it inspires you to do the same.
The point is to try to go somewhere different whether that be a park or a coffee shop or the local library. The change in scenery could seriously get those brain juices flowing and wake you up!
2. Force yourself to write. Everyday.
Many of you are going to roll your eyes at this one. Like, duh, if only we could write everyday but most of us are full-time students, parents, working two jobs; we’re freaking busy.
But your teachers weren’t kidding when they said writing was like playing an instrument or a sport. You don’t get better unless you practice everyday. Chances are your writer’s block is a result of becoming too busy and you haven’t been making time for your writing.
“Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.” – Stephen King
If there’s one thing all of the great writers seem to agree on, it’s that becoming a successful writer is hardly from the writing itself but from the will to actually do it and to discipline one’s self to do it everyday.
Don’t punish yourself if you can’t make it to the computer daily, but try to do something writing related once a day to help boost your creativity. You don’t have to write, but make sure you’re constantly reading books and writing down ideas. Keep feeding your brain all-things-writing-related and you’ll notice how much easier the words will flow from your finger tips.
3. Set deadlines for yourself
This technique seems to actually work for many writers. When you don’t have deadlines as a writer, you’re probably not writing or reading as much as you should. This is usually because no one is relying on you to get these things done except for yourself.
The best way to set deadlines for yourself is by finding literary magazines and competitions to submit to. Try setting up deadlines for yourself to have something not only written but also edited and ready to submit by the time submission due dates roll around.
It’s important to be submitting to publications to gain name recognition. A lot of major writers get recognition from their short stories and then move on to write life-changing novels.
Think about writing short stories and submitting them. There are also writing events for novelists that come around every year. NaNoWriMo is an awesome event where writers get to write an entire novel in one month.
4. Find writing prompts for inspiration
Writing prompts are helpful tools available to all writers with the touch of a google search. Look, I get it, no one wants to look up a writing prompt when they’re already working on something. Why would you stop what you’re doing to write something completely new?
Your probably stuck on what your writing because you’re either 1. tired of writing it or 2. you don’t know enough about what you’re writing to know how to continue. So, you should invest time inwriting prompts. They can help get words on the page when you’re feeling stressed about having lost your magic writer’s touch.
5. Lay out your story
I mentioned in the previous paragraph that writer’s block can be a result of the unknown. Mapping out a story can help a writer figure out where the story needs to go next to help bring back back your creativity. If you’re writing a novel, you don’t need to map it out till the very end but just for next few scenes until you feel like you can write them out.
Mapping out a story ranges from establishing the scene to the character to the character’s objectives. Figure out what you want to happen in the scene. Possibly write out the dialogue that you want to take place and you can go back and add the details in later.
Sometimes the words won’t just flow right out of you; however, mapping out your story can force them out. If you have any more suggestions to help overcome writer’s block, comment them below!