6 Tips to Beat Writers Block
Hi everyone! My name is Amanda, and I blog over at Indisposable Mama.
First of all, I would like to thank Kelley for having me here today. I have been reading her blog for about a year now, and I can say in all honesty that she is THE friendliest blogger I have met, and so I am very pleased to be working with her.
For awhile now, I have been reading her series about blogging tips, and I just had to chime in. Before taking time off to be a stay at home mom, I was a college writing instructor for ten years, and I jump at any opportunity to talk about issues pertaining to writing. I thought I would talk to you today about writer’s block.
Let me start off by saying that writer’s block stems from fear: fear of the blank page to be exact. We know we have something we have to accomplish, we might have a general idea of the end product we want to achieve, and we see that big, glaring white screen staring at us, taunting us.
And since writer’s block is psychological in nature, it’s great to beat it with a little psychology of our own. Anything you can do to take the pressure off will help tremendously.
Here are some of my favorite go to tricks when I am having difficulty writing:
- Give yourself a time limit. If you write a lot, you might want to go with ten-fifteen minutes. If you are newer to writing, you might want to start with five minutes. Then force yourself to write for that entire time. If your mind starts to go blank, start typing the alphabet or your name. Whatever you do, do NOT stop your hands from moving, and do NOT go back and revise. My students used to always scoff at me when I would make them do this, and then when they were done, they were amazed at how helpful it was. Oftentimes by the time you are finished, you have already completed or are at least on your way to a complete blog post!
- Turn off your monitor or if you are using a laptop, cover the screen with a towel. Oftentimes, we are so tempted to go back and reread what we have written that we stop ourselves from moving forward. If we can’t see what we are writing, we are more likely to keep moving forward.
- Give up on perfection. Earnest Hemingway is quoted as saying “The first draft of anything is s$#!.” If one of our nation’s greatest writers can have choppy, incoherent rough drafts, surely we can too! Writing time is for writing. Revision can come later.
- Talk it out. Oftentimes if I am having difficulty writing, I will discuss the writing topic with my husband, and soon enough, I will have it all written in my head. Changing the medium like this can free up your thoughts.
- Work ahead. As Kelley mentioned in last week’s post, working ahead can drastically decrease writer’s block because you have taken the pressure off of yourself. Anytime you can get ahead with blog posts, you will be doing yourself a favor. If you’re like me, this might be your greatest challenge
- Have fun! If you are reading this, it is probably because you are a blogger. Remember why you started this journey — because you wanted to experience the joy of writing. If you simply cannot get a post written, put it away for another time or another day. Give yourself a break to reconnect with your voice and your passion.
Well I hope some of these tips prove helpful for you. If you have a moment, I would love for you to take some time and head over to my blog.
If not, I would like to thank you for letting me be a little bit of your day.
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Tammy Killough says
Thanks for the tips Kelley…I really need to work on this some more! ~Tammy
Same here! Its a great reminder 🙂