Tip Thursday: Breaking Through (Part 1)
Breaking Through: Part 1
So, after the success of the tip suggested by podiumdavis, I decided to take another question to the authors on the site! We had a great response and once again I have to break the responses up into two parts! The question I asked was: How do you get past "Writer's Block?"
I hope you enjoy their responses!!
Site Administrator: JSmith
For me it's not so much that I hit a wall, but more of a mood thing. I can't force myself to write. In those cases I take the unconventional route and grab a bottle of wine (or a box, but no one has to know that) until I'm relaxed enough and can forget all of the drama that is life and focus on the story. If I'm too busy worrying about something it shows in my writing. When I do hit those blocks though, I usually turn to someone to help me brainstorm a bit. My beta MJ85 is great at helping me work through where I want to take the story. Once we've beat it to death how things should play out, it makes it a lot easier to put it on paper. And yes, I do mean actual paper. If I'm typing a story I get too distracted by emails and whatnot that I can't focus. Seeing the pages fill with words is also a good motivational tool for me. But again, if all else fails, a bottle of wine usually does the trick!
Tech Support/Hosted Author: Lugh
I don't get writer's block... I get writer's dungeon... or writer's moat. Sometimes writer's wall.... it's never one block. First I have to isolate the source of the 'oh hell no I'm not going to write that' protest going on in my head. That can take anywhere from a few minutes to a few years and can be something as basic as a character acting out of character or a young woman with an elizabethian wingback chair in her living room for no good reason... there has to be a story behind THAT one!... to some basic flaw in the story arc, plot, or logic. Something is niggling and I can't move on until I fix it -- whatever it is.
Now... sometimes it's not the story itself, and this just adds to the fun of being me. Sometimes it is me. If I get over stressed I have a hard time writing so even if there is no block.. I'm blocked. Or I'll get manic and write like crazy and while I'm producing a lot... it's all shit... which is another type of block really.... dirriaha of the pen. And sometimes like now, it's just too much trouble (or effort) to think, much less to think about fantasy and write about it. Engh. It takes effort. So sometimes the block isn't anything more than the author being a lazy depressed whiner. Or maybe there is something else going on that a metaphysical slegehammer might help. Push come to shove... get laid. Works wonders on all accounts.
Promising Author: Comicfan
Writer's Block is a pain. When I am working on something and hit the wall I need a break from it. I find the more I try to get past it on the same story it becomes worse. Trying to just push forward doesn't work for me. Instead it seems to alienate me from the characters I've created and what appears on the screen is less desirable as well as makes less sense. For me, I end up taking a break from whatever it is I am working on. Instead of banging my head against the wall, I will work on a prompt, go play a video game, watch a movie, or do whatever I have to so that I take a break from that idea or story. When I come back to it then I am refreshed and can look at whatever had been causing the problem and see new ways to finish it.
Writers block can be a difficult one, which can be amazingly good at times also. Think about it. Can't think of where to go? This can be troublesome aspect of writing. Nevertheless, half of my current story was thought up through writer’s block on where to take it.
Most of the if's, when's, where's and how’s of the stories have come out of this; I wish I could be more specific in that respect, but much of those things still haven't come out in the story. However, when writers block hits, I'll take a step back; think of what I have written so far (if any), and move on from there.
In particular, writers block doesn't have to mean that you're blocked in the way that it's typically known, but rather how you're going to word it. With this, I sometimes will sit back, think, and come back to it, only after listening to some music, taking a break, or going to play a video game. Other times it's been while at work, on break, thinking and then it hits you; you got a whole subplot to deal with now.
In some ways, I take writers block as an adventure. It’s a chance to feel out your variables, to take leaps and bounds forward. It only takes the time to sit, think and move on. In time, you’ll see how great some of these writers blocks can be.
In closing I like to say that writer’s block (at least for me) isn’t always a down fall, because at times it can bring you to something that you hadn’t thought of before; had you had any idea at all. So for me, sometimes, it’s a blessing to take a step back, and just think of some amazing ideas of where to go. In that respect, I know how my story goes, and how it unfolds.
When I plot a story, I know the beginning, the middle and the end. I might use a different avenue, than I expected, but I reach the end none the less. So when I experience writers block, I do two things. One, I think about what I want to happen in the next chapter. The funny thing is I usually know what I what to happen, it's the words that aren't flowing, but I don't stress or fret because I know they will come.
Second, I relax, use this time to catch up on stories of other Authors that I've fallen behind on, or find new stories to read, you'd be amazed how reading someone else’s writing can unlock the creative mind.
There have been times when I've been reading someone else’s story and a light bulb goes off, I exit stage, left pull up my story and Taa Daa! The juices at that point are in over load. What started out as a hard 200 words are now 1500 and I feel like I put a nice size dent in it.
I'll put the offending chapter down and leave it alone for a couple of days. I'll read more than usual, watch more films and TV than usual; sometimes something happens in one of them that gets the creative juices flowing. It sounds very cliché, but I find just not thinking about it really does help (not easy for authors to do I know).
Something else I find helps if I'm really stuck and about to start throwing large objects around; which thankfully doesn't happen too often. I'll sometimes actually write the entire next chapter first and then go back to the bit I'm stuck on. So instead of trying to write a chapter or scene that could, in theory, lead anywhere, I have a much more concrete destination set and it just becomes a matter of writing the journey; which I find becomes easier when I know exactly what happens next as opposed to having just my vague 10 or 15 word inkling of a chapter plot. That's why you will sometimes find me posting two chapters simultaneously; always an indication of writer's block, never a sign that I love you guys
So, that's it for Part 1! Don't forget to come back next week to see what the rest of the author's I contacted replied with! There is lots more to come!!
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