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December 18

How to Overcome Writer’s Block

Business Development

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What is writer’s block?

Well, I just cannot think of a single thing to say.

Does this sound familiar?

No!

Really?

We all have experienced this phenomenon at one time or another.

It usually happens when we have to write something, particularly on the deadline.

I am talking about…

Uh, I can’t think of what the word is…

Oh, yes, it’s on the tip of your tongue, but you cannot seem to get on paper…

That’s…  WRITER’S BLOCK!

Man, I feel better just getting that out of my head and onto on paper!

Writer’s block is that demon…

the starring at the blank page.

You may think you know EXACTLY what you are going to write, but as soon as you sit down to write, your mind suddenly goes completely blank.

We are not talking about Zen meditation here.

There are no stare-at-the-wall-until-enlightenment-hits.

I’m talking about that dumbfounded process of tapping your fingers on the keyboard, but nothing connects.

You know when your head starts to search for something, anything to type…

but nothing, absolutely nothing seems to come out.

You are stuck and you know it.

The tighter the deadline, the worse the anguish of writer’s block gets.

Now, can you figure out what might be causing this horrible plunge into speechlessness?

The answer is obvious: FEAR!

You are petrified of that blank page.

You are terrified you have nothing of value to say. You are afraid of the fear of writer’s block itself!

It does not matter if you have done your homework and you just need to string sentences together that you can repeat in your sleep.

Writer’s block can strike anyone at any time.

Based on fear, you begin to doubt your self-worth.

Writer’s block can make you feel like an idiot. You may even think that what you might offer will come out as gibberish!

Let’s review this madness rationally.

What might be the culprit that is causing all the trouble?

  1. Perfectionism

You feel like you have to produce a masterpiece of literature from the first draft. Otherwise, you will see yourself as a failure.

  1. Editing instead of composing

There is your negative you sitting on your shoulder, telling you as you type…

that what you are thinking is utter garbage and doesn’t deserve to see the light of day.

  1. Self-consciousness

You can’t think, let alone write.  All you can manage to do is question your sanity and,

wonder how you ever thought you could write in the first place.

You’re not focusing on what you’re trying to write, you’re focusing all that negative self-talk.

  1. Can’t seem to get started

The first sentence is always the hardest.

As writers, we all know how important the first sentence is.

It must be brilliant, unique!

You have to draw the reader in from the start!

  1. Shattered concentration your mind starts to wander and think about all the things that might go wrong. You could have your power shut off, or your partner may walk out. The worst thoughts just start hammering you.

How can you possibly concentrate on all this mental clutter?

  1. Then there’s ProcrastinationIt is your favorite hobby. You’re an expert at putting things off. Binge-watching of Game of Thrones seems like the best use of your time.

You have to face up to the fact that this is one of the reasons you have writer’s block.

How to Overcome Writer’s Block

Okay, now that I’ve brought all the stuff that haunts us, let’s talk about how to beat this back with a writing stick.

It’s time to listen up.

Don’t worry about writing anything right now.

We are here to talk about how you can deal with writer’s block.

Put it to rest…

There are ways to beat this nasty demon.

Check out the methods below and choose the one that best shouts you. You may find them all useful at one time or another.

  1. Make sure you are Prepared

the only thing to fear is fear itself. It may be a cliché, but as soon as you start writing, your fear will go away.

If you spend some time researching and reviewing your project before you sit down to write…

you should be able to put things in order and eliminate that crazy fear.

  1. Stop trying to be Perfect No one ever writes a perfect piece out of the gate. Don’t put unnecessary expectations on your writing! Expect to have to make changes to the first draft and,permit yourself to write without concern, knowing you are going to have to rewrite it before you are done.
  2. Compose instead of editing. Never write your first draft with your negative you sitting on your shoulder making snide editorial comments. Writing is a special process, you need to be clear-headed, and having negative self-talk will prevent you from producing anything.

Sit down at your computer or your desk, take a deep breath and clear your mind.

Let your fingers hover over your keyboard or pick up your pen.

Then jump just relax and let your fingers do the talking.

Write, scribble, let loose, and with a pen in hand or your computer keyboard start writing.

  1. Forget about that first sentence you’ll hit when the time is writing. Skip it for now! Start writing the story in the middle and save the beginning for later.

There is a good chance that when you read it over,

the first line will write itself.

  1. Concentration can be a hard one. Life throws many distractions in our paths. Take a vacation from all those annoying worries and just let your mind focus on your writing.Create a safe space, maybe even a physical one, where nothing exists except the present moment.

    If one of those distractions creeps in, send it packing!

  2. Stop procrastinating this is a big one, but procrastination on hold…

You’ll have time to binge-watch your favorite show when you are done.  Use it as a reward for completing the project.

Create an outline of your project. Keep your research notes close by so you can refer back to them.

Start by writing whatever comes into your head.  Let it flow, you know you are going to make adjustments later.

The bottom line is you just need to get going.

Once you have the first draft down, walk away and take a break.

Let your mind relax…

Then read it over.

Make changes as you see the need. It may take a couple of reviews, but when you are done, you’ll have created something that you will be ready to share.

I hope you found this informative and useful.

Let me know what you think, leave your comments below.

 

About the author 

David Wakeman

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