Beating Writer’s Block

So it’s happened. After months of fantastic productivity, sometimes exceeding 8,000 words a day, I am reduced to staring at my computer like a zombie.

Writer’s block happens to everybody.

I know better than to be scared. Writer’s block happens to everybody, which I know thanks to the amazing “real” authors I’ve come into contact with (they’re all there on the right, in the “authors who inspire” list). I know this will pass, inevitably, but it’s my responsibility to push through during it: to not quit, to continue on, to write even if what comes out is crap.

Which it is right now. At least, in my POV.

Here’s what else I’m going to do.

calvin-writing1. Read.

I need to fill my artistic well (thank you, Julia Cameron). It’s sort of like exercising, in a way. I’ve been sweating and straining, and my muscles need a good dose of protein to keep growing.

2. Write.

I know, I already said this, but it cannot be stressed enough. Back to the exercise analogy: if I don’t exercise regularly, guess what? I won’t grow as quickly, and more importantly, I will lose what good I earned. Ever gone a few weeks without physical exercise? You don’t breathe as well going up the stairs, do you?

I can fix a bad page. I can’t fix a blank one. (Nora Roberts)

3. Reason.

I know this will pass. I know others go through it. I know this is not the end of my writing career, and that it isn’t some drastic thing like oh noes I have only one book in me and now it is all over. This will pass.

It has hit others, and it passed for them.

It has hit me before, and it passed for me, too.

If I keep telling myself these things, I know I’ll believe them in time. It just takes a lot of repetition.

4. Rejuvenate

Remind myself I’ve overcome things like grief over lost time, dealt with the fact that issues from my life pop up in my writing (and yes, anyone who knows me well is going to know what caused it), and learned to stay persistent and strong no matter what rejections come my way. Not only that –

Remind myself to laugh. (Clients From Hell always gets my funny-bone going.) Yes, this is srryus bizness. I still need to laugh. If I don’t love what I’m doing, then why on earth would I bother?

Remind myself of the priceless support of an incredible husband who loves me, of numerous friends who have carried me through even worse times, and I can do this. It’s just a little brain-spaz. it’s not the end of the world.

5. Write.

Hey, I said that already.

And I’ll say it again.

Write, write, write. No matter what I turn out – after all, I can fix a bad page. I cannot fix a blank one (thank you, Nora Roberts). And not only that.

I will tell people I’m struggling – it’ll help them as much as it helps me.

I will refuse to give up, and instead work my way through this (why isn’t this scene working, what’s wrong with this character, why did the pace just sputter and die….).

I will keep going.

Next update from me will be my writing progress, whatever it may be. It’s coming.

I am nowhere near finished.

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