During the course of writing my book, several people asked me what I did when faced with writer’s block. Fortunately, it wasn’t much of a problem.
After all those years of writing promotional copy for high-tech companies, I learned to push myself beyond the block. When a client is waiting on copy, it’s not too cool to say, “Oh sorry, not today. I have writer’s block. I’ll do it as soon as this passes.”
When I found myself staring at the dreaded “white” page, I learned to make myself start somewhere. The end? Maybe the middle. It really didn’t matter as long as I started. And it really didn’t matter if what I wrote was good. The point was to write.
The art of writing is the art of applying the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair. –Mary Heaton Vorse
Here’s some ideas about how you can push yourself around the block:
- Write in bullet points and come back later to fill it in.
- Get away from your desk and take a brisk ten-minute walk.
- Listen to upbeat music. Or classical. Or whatever gets you going.
- Talk it out with someone who can help you look at it from another angle.
- Force yourself to write something.
- Keep writing, even if you think what you’re typing is nonsense.
- Remember that no matter how bad you think it is, it probably isn’t.
When I began writing Zemsta last July, sometimes I agonized over the enormity of what I had undertaken. I’d think, “There is no way I can do this. It’s too much. I don’t have enough to say….”
Well, 75,000 words later, I realize I really did have a whole book in me.self-publishing, writer's block, writing