Overcoming Writer’s Block

I’ve been doing this writing thing for a while. So I am no stranger to writer’s block. I see it coming. Sense it’s presence the minute it enters the room.

Goes something like this …

Open word doc. Stare blankly at page. Change font 3 times hoping for inspiration. Minimize doc 1, open doc 2. Stare at doc 2. Type lamo sentence. Use thesaurus to replace words, hoping lamo sentence sounds inspired.

15 grueling minutes pass … making a mental list of things I could be doing.

Click over to Google. Type subject of pending chapter to do online research. Engrossed.

Look up startled and realize I just spent 20 minutes pretend shopping at  Anthropologie.

Feel immense guilt but stay securely in chair. Realize I am terribly thirsty. Think I might die if I don’t get water.

Start an internal debate about real or imagined dehydration. Pinching skin for further proof. Wishing for a mirror to see evidence of obvious dehydration. Wondering about it’s impact on my brain.

Click over to Google. Search ‘dehydration effects.’

If you can even vaguely relate … then I have some tips that just might help. Things I have learned the hard way – after hours of beating myself up for watching precious, private writing minutes slip down the toilet.

Tips for Writer’s Block:

Release Indecision to Delicious: Bake. Cook. Plan menus. When learning to deal with supreme pressure + writer’s block, I learned to make all kinds of amazing muffins. There is something about measuring out physical elements, mixing them up in a big bowl, and getting a delicious result that is extremely helpful to the writing process. Besides that, it tastes really great. And your people really appreciate that you actually do something other than stare at the screen and mutter while sit in your pajamas. (This is one of my favorite muffin recipes.)

Get out of Your Pajamas: Listen, I know the temptation. It’s pure bliss to sit in pajamas working. It says, “I am my own boss! I can wear what I want! No one owns me!” Yes. Says that for first 30 minutes but very shortly after .. you face those pajama demons. Hello, loser “writer”… hahahahahahaha.

Get Outside: Oh, I know. This is ‘such a waste of time’ when you have so much creating to do. So much manuscript to finish. But I promise. If you just let yourself go a little … and wander outside a bit. Look up, look down, look all around. Don’t you feel the awe?

Quit Mail. Log out of Facebook: Um, enough said.

Find a New Spot: Sometimes just moving my laptop from one room to another unlocks my brain (of course, you must go with it). Look out a new window. Get a fresh perspective. Go to a coffee shop. All that helps.

Stop Expecting Other People to Inspire You: When you are inspiration starved, reading someone else’s blog, book or article is not the way to ‘get inspired.’ It could however, get you a little virus called plagiarism. Seek inspiration in your daily life. Go exercise. Meet friends for lunch. Do a grocery run. Live your life, writer person! Because that’s where inspiration is found.

… to be continued (sometime after I get out of my pajamas).