As a writer, I am faced with the question, “how do you combat writer’s block?” all the time. And I’ll let you in on my secret…. I don’t have a secret. Truth be told, there is not one set way to get rid of or overcome writer’s block, and for a lot of artists, creative blocks are something that is natural, and takes time to know how to move from it. Living in a house that lives and breathes art, I have had to find ways to continue to work, even if my brain is screaming a million things at once, or if it’s silent. Silence can be more detrimental to my block because thought doesn’t ‘just arise.’ Below, I have compiled a list to help you get through your next spout of writer’s block. Of course, this is not, and will never be a complete list, and I do always encourage my fellow artists to add to the list in order to hone specific methods that work for specific individuals.
1. Do another kind of art
Lots of time when writing becomes strained, it is best to take one’s mind completely off of the subject at hand, and switch to a more kinesthetic exercise.
2. Write in a different style
Trying to finish that book, but not having any luck where you’re at? Try writing a poem, or go old-fashioned, and write someone a letter. Bonus, the receiver will be appreciative of the letter you sent. Letters to one’s self can also be helpful if you are someone who is able to work through problems in your own head.
3. Get some exercise
There’s nothing like some flowing blood to get the mind back into the game. Exercise has been medically proven to ease symptoms of depression and anxiety, and these are also disorders that can hinder your creative ability or motivation. Playing with your cats, or your dog, or going for a walk can get your mind moving enough for writer’s block to ease.
4. Have a conversation
Sometimes, like mentioned above, talking to one’s self can be very useful, however that doesn’t work for everyone. Find someone you trust and ask them if you can bounce an idea or two off of them! Friends are a tremendous support group that all artists should take advantage of because art is not created in a vacuum!
5. Stop for the day
If it isn’t happening, it isn’t happening. Walking away is an incredibly powerful tool in your arsenal, and should be employed when frustration levels are at their highest. This will save paper, time, and will stop you from tossing something that is maybe really great. Plus, art isn’t about force, it’s about creativity.
At the end of the day, writer’s block is something that every writer faces, even Stephen King. But, that doesn’t mean that we have to allow it to take over our daily lives so it con obstruct our artistic prowess. Find a method that works for you and embrace it, it may just be the distraction you need to get yourself back on track. Because, who ever said all distractions are bad?