There are all kinds of tips and tricks for getting through a writer’s block. Mostly, I ignore them and procrastinate instead. But here’s a technique I do recommend, a no-pressure method to ease into writing. It’s especially helpful if you have a deadline and aren’t quote unquote in the mood to write, or you are blocked for any number of reasons, reasons you might or might not care to address but in any case you need to get something down on the page and yet can’t seem to even get started.
Here ya go:
Stop trying to write. Shut the laptop, put down the pen. Now think hypothetically about what you could say IF you were going to write about the subject. Not that you are really writing about it now, because you aren’t. Just play with what might maybe come to mind to say — if you were – even though you’re not writing about it right now. This is important: you gotta believe you are NOT writing this down, certainly not now.
Now step away. Let that percolate for fifteen or twenty minutes while you take a walk/take a shower/clean your closet/do some quilting/mow the lawn/do whatever as long as it is a repetitive physical activity that yields tangible results.
Now come back to your writing spot. Picture in your mind a supportive person who would like to hear your opinion and thoughts on this subject, who would enjoy learning what you have to say about it. Imagine telling that eager listener what you’ve been thinking about it, sharing what you might write if you were going to write about it, hypothetically speaking of course.
Now let that feeling and telling flow out through your fingers onto the page or keyboard in a long winded, expressive, nonstop kind of a way without stopping to read it back and when you’re done, see if that’s not actually sort of more than halfway there to writing it for real.
Gotcha! Now build on what you’ve put down in writing on the page.
Keep this gentle, sweet, low key writer’s block tip in your tool box, along with the evil high pressure writer’s block technique I mentioned earlier. I hope one or the other of these tips will help you get started writing next time you are stuck in a state of fear and anxiety looking at that expletive deleted blank page.
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