What do you do when you have writer's block?

@dlkuku (1936)
United States
March 21, 2007 1:01pm CST
I go through periods when I just don't feel very inspired or creative. Those times when I just can't think of anything interesting to write about. I know this is a common thing among writers. I try to get past it by first taking a short break from writing, and listening instead. To other people, the news, the radio, talk shows, whatever media is in my direct sphere and has something of interest for me. And then I will write. Even if it's just a thought or two. Sometimes those simple thoughts can turn into something way more. By putting those thoughts down, I feel as if I can move past the writer's block. How do you get past it?
2 people like this
13 responses
• India
21 Mar 07
Well, I'm passionate about writing too. Apart from my two blogs, I pen poetry whenever I get inspired to do so. Being a software professional, I don't really get the time to indulge myself to all that I want, but I do keep up. Often, I too experience the writer's block, inspite of having tons of things that I want to write about. I solve the problem by doing some reading instead. When I read something that somebody else has written, it helps me in two ways. Apart from getting to know another person's views, it broadens my own horizons. I also get to know how others are going about expressing their thoughts. I read selected blogs and other articles. I'm also a regular on wikipedia. I recently read a movie spoiler on wikipedia and was inspired to watch the movie myself. Upon watching it, I was so taken in my the movie that I actually wrote my own review of the movie on my blog.
@dlkuku (1936)
• United States
21 Mar 07
I blog and I've written poetry for years. I like to read other blogs too, and one of my very good blogging friends is a published author.
@gleznov (391)
• United States
21 Mar 07
Something I occasionally do that's very helpful is to sit down and just start writing. Write anything... Like: blah blah blah I'm so bored what can I write about I love writing but there's nothing to write about and now here I am, sitting here in my stupid little bathroom, trying to type on a dinky old laptop set up on the toilet. It would be nice if there was more room in the house in which to write. When we first moved into the house... And the next thing I notice, I've written like 5 pages, which went from nothing into a coherent writing. Rereading those pages, I may find a few topics touched on that spawn an idea for a separate writing, and jump off from there. But even if no new ideas come from it, at least you spent some time practicing, right?
2 people like this
@dlkuku (1936)
• United States
21 Mar 07
I've done that too, sometimes it is just rubbish and doesn't develop, but there are times when it turns into something interesting. And practicing is always a good thing.
@peaceful (3286)
• United States
21 Mar 07
Oddly, I was kind of going through this myself a few days ago, and then it simply vanished on it's own... I find that I'm able to get past "the brick wall" by going outside for a walk in Nature, I get stultified by city life, sometimes... even, if I lived in beautiful Mt Airy like you do, I still need the solitude of a walk in Nature, to help me break the spell... Otherwise, allowing my imagination to run wildly and humourously can do the trick... Since, I write for a living, it's important for me to crush writer's block quickly and efficiently... PS: Watching the free movie, "The Law Of Attraction" really blasted me right out of my recent bout with writer's block! You have to sign up to watch the whole movie, but you don't have to buy anything! :) Enjoy! http://www.secret-seminar.com/cgi-bin/go.cgi/26207
@dlkuku (1936)
• United States
21 Mar 07
Yeah, Mt Airy is a beautiful little town, but I like nature too. I'd rather walk through the woods any day, but I have only lived here a year, and not sure where to go. Thanks for the movie suggestion!
@patgalca (13530)
• Orangeville, Ontario
21 Mar 07
I agree with what everyone has said... going for a walk, using writing prompts, just start writing about anything at all. Another is to say a prayer before you go to sleep at night asking God to bring you a story in your dreams. Good luck!
1 person likes this
@dlkuku (1936)
• United States
21 Mar 07
I always fall asleep praying, but I never thought about asking God for a story! I'll have to keep that in mind.
@patgalca (13530)
• Orangeville, Ontario
22 Mar 07
Most importantly is to ask God to make you REMEMBER your dreams. Most times we don't remember what we dreamt. Remembering is the first step to coming up with some good stories.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Mar 07
Whenever that happens to me I do two things: I go for a walk alone and let my mind focus on my surroundings, or I listen to music that gets my adrenaline going. It gets me kick-started. Sometimes reading over what I wrote helps because I start to visualize and see things differently. Hope this helps. Let me know if you need anything else.
1 person likes this
@dlkuku (1936)
• United States
21 Mar 07
Taking a walk is a good suggestion. Thanks for your input, and your suggestions. I will definately have to try taking a walk, or maybe two!
• United States
22 Mar 07
Just trying to help, and I am glad that one of my suggestions might actually do that. I love writing, and when I hit a block, it is very frustrating.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Mar 07
I just stop for a while and wait for the spirit to hit again
1 person likes this
@dlkuku (1936)
• United States
21 Mar 07
Sometimes, I do that too. I think people need to recharge after a while, sitting back and doing nothing at all is sometimes a good thing.
• United States
22 Mar 07
There are many things that I do when I get writer's block. Some of them you mention here such as listen to the news, other people, etc. I also take advantage of surfing the Internet as oftentimes I find something there worthy of writing about. Another thing that I do that may seem a bit of the wall is to combine words that start with the same letter to come up with crazy ideas. Examples: Arrogant Aardvarks, Obnoxious Orange Orangutans, and so on and so forth.
@sechsey (1836)
• Canada
22 Mar 07
I usually take a break by going out, enjoying a game, play with my dog or go on a vacation just to relax my mind and maybe acquire some new insights and ideas somewhere. There are times that i get to suffer this too and it so difficult to think or come up with something new. Its pointless to stay in front of the computer making it harder on yourself. So i just go somewhere else instead.
1 person likes this
@techsam (158)
• India
22 Mar 07
Writer's block!! Now, this is something which I ahve experienced time and time again. The key to it is don't fret. If you could write once, may be you can write again. After all, lets figure out why you write.... you write to express your thoughts or emotions. At some level of you consciousness you have to be at a particualr state of emotion, to actually write about anything at all. You can't write about love, without thinking about it, can you? Now, if you can't do anything..... you have hit teh writer's block!! What I do, in such cases, simply put down my pen, and never even think about it. And one fine day I would just sit down and write!! It noramlly is a manifestation of a thought that was in my mind for days on end, else it would be an interesting discussion, or something happening which left some sort of an impression. That's when I snap out of my slumber!!
1 person likes this
@meljessxena (2319)
• Australia
22 Mar 07
well this happens to me a fair bit, i just not worry about it at the moment and hope the thoughts come back and i feel more creative. sometimes i listen to music and lay down and just think. works for me
1 person likes this
22 Mar 07
Check out this cd http://cdbaby.com/cd/hypnotica I'm not a writer myself but you get all these creative thoughts after listening to it. http://misterbelgic.blogspot.com
1 person likes this
@ainee82 (618)
• Philippines
22 Mar 07
i just try to watch some movies. i usually watch movies that have women or men typing something. it makes me want to type something as well. then sometimes i play it in the computer while typing. it really does help. haha
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Mar 07
I primarily write poetry and I find that when I'm blocked it helps me to write in prose. Usually, I can come back to a prose piece a few days later and prune it into a focused poem. It helps me sometimes to read work that I find inspiring. Often, what I find most helpful when I can't find the words is to do something mindless. A task that keeps the body busy but the mind unoccupied. I am most productive while doing the dishes, walking, running, doing yoga, driving, or taking a shower. Then it's just a matter of remembering the ideas long enough to write them down. There are also many many books on writing that have great "assignments" in them. In one of my classes, we read a book entitled "If You Want To Write." The author gives some really great practical advice and useful prompts. I know it might seem elementary to write about a specified topic, but it's better to write about nothing, or nothing that is important rather than write nothing. Another book I've used is "Page by Page" by Heather Sellers. It's not as mind-opening as "If You Want To Write," but it includes some really helpful tips, too.