To my fellow writers out there, we all know the feeling when nothing comes to mind. You try to write about a specific topic and suddenly, everything you know and understand about that topic disappears. Most people give up when they get hit with Writer's Block, but that will lead to nothing, especially not success, assuming that's your goal. Whether it's writing for a school assignment, a journal entry, a blog or that novel you've been dying to start on, here are some tips for when you can't get the words onto the page.
1. Take a walk.
I know it sounds simple, and that's the point. A walk will distract you just enough to get your juices flowing, but give you the space to think freely and not feel forced to put your thoughts into words just yet.
No, seriously. I had writer's block for a class assignment in Creative Writing, so I baked chocolate chip cookies, which is so random, and then this article came to life (and I finished my school assignment). Baking busies your hands but doesn't take too much brain power.
3. Call a friend to talk about your writing.
I know this isn't something that I like to do, so I'm assuming most writers don't either. Talk about what you're writing before it's written and perfect?! That's like a professional photographer showing someone pictures before they're edited- unheard of. However, it helps to verbalize your thoughts and have a sounding board. Even if they don't say anything, you're able to process your thoughts and then begin writing down what you're saying out loud.
4. Look up some random writing prompts.
It seems like a silly suggestion: "Hey, if you can't think of what to write, write something else!" Typically, Writer's Block hits you because you're focusing on writing about one specific thing or situation. When you shift your focus for a few minutes to some fun writing prompts, you might spark some ideas to include in your specific topic. Check out 642 Tiny Things to Write About.
5. Whatever you do, DON'T go on social media.
I used to think social media would be a good thing to take my mind off of writing and then come back, ready with something that would magically appear. The truth is that social media often times distracts you from the important things you're trying to focus on to write about and gives you other ideas for different things to write (not bad, but not the focus) like this article I wrote in the midst of my Writer's Block. I went on social media, after baking cookies, and I was inspired by baking cookies, but then distracted by social media. When I should have focused on my class assignment solely, I ended up writing this article. Not that it was a bad decision, because I hope it can help some of you with your Writer's Block, but it wasn't what I was supposed to be focusing on. If I had a deadline for a novel, whew. That could be a disastrous distraction.
Okay, obviously every writer is different. Maybe social media is exactly what you need, or maybe you're like me and it distracts you further (unless it's focused on your writing like Pinterest- searching for ideas for your novel). Either way, chocolate is almost always a must. Don't feel bad, and don't get yourself down for having Writer's Block every now and then. Someone once told me, "There's no such thing as a perfect novel, so you have to let it go." To which I would add, take a break, then just WRITE.