Friday Fun is a group post from the writers of the NHWN blog. Each week, we’ll pose and answer a different, get-to-know-us question. We hope you’ll join in by providing your answer in the comments.
QUESTION: We recently asked you what questions you’d like answered in our Friday Fun post. Today, we’re answering the following reader question:
Jamie Wallace: Hi, Laurel. Writer’s Block is something each of us battles at one time or another. I have days when I believe it’s a real thing and days where I know it’s all in my head. Either way, I’ve dealt with it enough over the years that I wrote a four-part series on the topic:
- Writer’s Block Cause #1: Fear
- Writer’s Block Cause #2: Life (aka “I don’t have time to write”)
- Writer’s Block Cause #3: Not Knowing Where to Start
- Writer’s Block Cause #4: Your Vision for Your Story
I will also offer up this post on the challenge of starting. I hope you find these posts helpful in understanding and overcoming your writer’s block. Good luck!
Lee Laughlin: Sit down in a place where you are comfortable and with the beverage of your choice, and your favorite writing implement and word collection device (pen & paper, lap top, crayon and paper napkin, whatever floats your boat).
Set a timer for 5 minutes. Ready. Set. Write. Even if it is 5 minutes of “This sucks, I have no idea what to say. Where are my words?” Write. Don’t judge. Write. When the timer goes off, you’re done. Unless of course you’re not, then by all means keep writing. Slowly increase the time on the timer. Writing is like exercise, to be successful, you need to be consistent. Write when you don’t feel like it. Write when you think it is going to suck. Just write.
Lisa J. Jackson: All of the above! But to add a little bit to the conversation, my favorite acronym for this particular ailment is: BICHOK. Butt-in-chair-hands-on-keyboard.
Open that blank document and just start typing. Or open that notepad and just start writing. As Lee mentioned, you may not have any idea what to say — type/write that! “I have no idea what to write about, my brain is mush, words just aren’t coming to me.” Write ANYTHING. It may come out as all gibberish. It doesn’t matter – you’re clearing the decks and the words WILL come if you persist at it. The 5-minute timer is a great way to get started.
And so what if what you have after 5 minutes looks like an alien language? You can pat yourself on the back for getting THOSE words out of your head to make room for the real words (your story words) that *are* moving to the front of the line and that *will* hit the page if you keep striving to reach them.