Every writer is aware of writer’s block, but most, wisely, don’t speak about it under any circumstances. Yet, at some point, almost every writer must confront this issue. That’s when it’s good to have a list of tips to turn to for help.
Tips are needed because worrying, while inevitable, doesn’t help. The way writer’s block works is insidious: the more stressed you become and the harder you try to find the perfect word, the more frustrating the situation becomes. For screenwriters, the stress only mounts if writer’s block happens as a deadline approaches – which, of course, is often the case.
However, there are ways to get past writer’s block that doesn’t involve holding your head in your hands and sobbing uncontrollably. If faced with writer’s block, consider putting some of the ideas into place.
To get the ideas flowing, get outside and move around. It literally will get the blood flowing, which is better than just sitting there, staring at the screen. Also, you will find your mind can tackle writing challenges when you focus on something else, as long as that something else is calm and relaxing. A hike around the local park might just do the trick.
Mediation works on the same principle. By focusing your brain on something else, you allow your unconscious to become more creative. Mediation focuses your thoughts and clears your mind. After you’re done meditating, write down some of your ideas. You’ll be surprised what you can come up with very quickly.
Do Some Chores
Another way to take your mind off your current state of writer’s block is good, old-fashioned household chores. When you’re washing the dishes, folding the laundry or trimming the bushes, you’re not obsessing over your current Act 2 problem. Give your brain a chance to relax and sort it out while you focus on some low-intensity chores.
You can read about how other writers overcome writer’s block. If the topic you are writing about doesn’t inspire you, try to find some aspect of it that gets the creative juices flowing. This is going to take some research, but you can afford a short delay that will help when you’re stuck in writer’s block.
Writers should always – always! – take something to write notes on wherever they go. During whatever little breaks you get in the day, such as sitting and waiting at an appointment, think about your writing. Jot down ideas as you go along. You never know what thought will push you forward.
You likely are reading fiction constantly, anyway. But make a point of taking a break and reading when you find yourself confronted by writer’s block. Seeing how another writer handled a character or situation can spark ideas that will lead to solving your writing problem.
Look at Old Notes
Every writer has notes from the past. If you find yourself really stuck, consider going back and looking at them. You may find an idea or two that sparks creativity for your current project.
With all these ideas, the most important step is to shake things up. Try a new approach. Change your environment. You can even change what you write with. Ultimately, by giving your brain something else to think about, you’ll find that the block tumbles away and creativity flows once again.