I had a wonderful lunch with a fellow writer this past week and the topic of writer's block came up along with all the things we do as writers to prep ourselves to sit and write. Every writer is different and some have a set process of getting into the zone. They can't write unless they have complete silence, play classical music, have the TV on, write with a special pen in a certain colored ink, certain colored paper or a mug of coffee by their side.
The process in which we write varies and I too have my favorite things that help me get into the mood to write or help let the words that swim in my brain fall onto the page with relative ease.
In speaking with my friend, it came to me that as a writer you need to abandon your steps of process or at least alter them from time to time especially if they don't work. Making a change or trying out something new is not bad, I think as writers we have to do it from time to time. Over time you do learn all the things that help you in given circumstances.
My friend told me that she has her set process but it's not working for her right now. I suggested she break from what she knows and just let inspiration come to her. Inspiration will strike when you're not worrying about the fact you haven't been able to write.
Writer's block is frustrating when you have an idea but can't get further than that no matter how hard you try. I have had writer's block but thankfully not in a way that crippled me. I think what I suffered was writer's idea block. How do I get this idea to work?
I don't have concrete advice to help those of you out there dealing with writer's block but here are a few suggestions:
1) Change your typical writing location. If you always write at a desk try a different location.
2) If you write in silence, play music that moves you whether it's your favorite song or a artist.
3) If you write with noise, try silence.
4) Do you always write while at a computer? Try writing with a pen and paper.
Not much for suggestions but they do work or at least they have for me now and then over the years. One other tidbit to offer up and that is not to beat yourself up and it's perfectly okay to starting writing and then stop to daydream and then come back. In those moments distraction your mind is still working on your story.
That's a wrap for today. I leave you with Karan Casey's Beat of My Heart as your musical treat for the day.