Saturday, 2 January 2010

Getting over Writer's Block

Tell Me a Story - writing tip

If the surge of ideas has faded, if your writing feels trapped or awkward, if you’ve hit the dreaded writer’s block, maybe you’re just not paying attention to your subconscious.

The waking mind

When you hit a sticking point, it sometimes means the plot is flawed and your subconscious knows and has slowed down. You’re still forging ahead as if the storyline is okay, and simply think you’re having a bad patch. The idea that your scheme might be wrong hasn’t trickled through to your waking mind yet.

Sometimes it’s better to step back and take another look at your plot. Re-assess your ideas; are there other scenarios that might work better?

Allow it to be processed

Search through your running notebook of questions on the story (you do keep a notebook of things that need answering or resolving at a later date don’t you). Feed the ideas into your mind, try reversing the roles, chew things over. Ask yourself questions about the problem you've hit.

Now put the whole thing to one side. Take a walk, feed the dog, go shopping, do anything except write. Allow time for this fresh material and the questions to be processed by your subconscious. Let it poach and boil whilst you do something unrelated. Take a holiday.

Nourish your mind

Feeding crude material into your mind can be intriguing and very worthwhile. The more you nourish your mind, the more probable your subliminal dynamic will be there to help.

Lying dormant within your notebook, or sometimes in what you’ve already written will be a clue to the problem. Give it time to bubble and eventually the answer will doubtless appear.

Who needs writers agents?
Book writing tips - A Perceptive Notebook