Tips for Writers

Stuck in Writer Hell?

I don’t want to call it Writer’s Block. But we all know what I’m talking about. Those days when you can hardly get out of bed and write. It’s just no fun anymore. It’s not flowing. It’s too hard. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Been there, done that. It happens to all of us. We give it different labels. We feel it differently, though just as strongly.

Some authors can write through anything. Some get disrupted at the least little thing. Other than having a designated space, or machine, or time, how do you control those times when you’ll do anything to avoid all of those?

When the story no longer interests me–and it happens from time to time–it takes me several days of ignoring it to figure out what’s wrong. It’s a right-brain/left-brain thing, I’m convinced. If I try to analyze it (left brain), the creative solution doesn’t present itself. If I go do favorite things and let the story gel, the right brain asserts itself and presents the problem, if not the solution: I made a mistake. I went a wrong direction. It could be the last scene. It could be the one before. Generally, it’s not farther away than that.

My favorite things to do while I’m waiting for this revelation are: read the newspaper (rarely touch it otherwise), go to a movie (as opposed to watching the DVR), work on my web site, and read, read, READ. It’s absolutely amazing how inspiring it is to read a great author.

That said, I have to tell you: I didn’t have one of those moments in Love in the Fast Lane. Writing Scotty Templeton was fun from beginning to end.

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