When Words Don’t Work

We’ve all been there. A great story idea that just doesn’t stick. An outline you can’t get a handle on. A deadline that’s driving you crazy. Sound familiar? There are millions of tidbits of advice out there on overcoming the void of writer’s block. I’ll happily share with you a few things that have helped me in the past.

1. PRAYER

Completely true. When I get alone with God for a bit, clear my head, I often find the pressure leaving my shoulders. There’s nothing like grabbing a notebook, finding a quiet place and just giving the burden to God. He’s willing to take it! Try dwelling in the moment, scribbling some plot outlines. Mostly, just be patient. Stress never brings about inspiration. Ask me how I know . . .

2. OUTLINING

Which kind of writer are you? I’m a planner. That’s, like, my serious curse in this trade. I can’t write three chapters without a notebook stuffed with every little detail about those chapters prior to the setting of a single word to the page. As far as outlining goes, I enjoy it. It enables me to see the story, which is, of course, very important. Some people use more complicated outline methods, but I find a basic bulleted list works fine for me.

  • Jane goes to the park with siblings and finds an abandoned cat.
  • Jane takes cat home, gives it food, searches for a proper home.
  • She later gives the cat to a widowed elderly neighbor who wanted a companion.

Those were not writing prompts. It sounds like a bit of dull story to me. But, then again, who knows? We writers are vessels of imagination! Perhaps one of you will turn that outline sample into something . . . beautiful. Please let me know if you do. 🙂

3. GIVE IT A REST

I can’t stress enough about this. Before I decided to take a full day off from writing, I hated the idea. You might feel the same way I did. But there is nothing more refreshing to one’s imagination and brain – and sanity – than taking a break. You might even consider, if you are really burnt out, taking a longer hiatus. Who could bear a hiatus?!

Anyway, what I resolved to do, after much grumbling and groaning, was to take every Sunday and set it aside as a no-writing zone. Simply a day of rest. The first couple weeks were absolute torture. I was, like, dying. And then my writing schedule became tighter. And one day a week free from the responsibility of the task became a huge blessing.

Every Sunday, the pressure is gone. This is such a wonderful feeling! And, by Monday morning, my brain is relaxed and ready to go on creating. I mean, think about it – writing is creating. Even God, the Maker and Creator of the entire universe, took a day off from creating. It is no small feat.

 

WHAT DO YOU DO TO CONQUER WRITER’S BLOCK? I would love to hear your secret. If any one of us could develop the “sure cure” for writer’s block . . . well, think Nobel Prize. Tell me your opinion in the comments. Oh, and don’t forget – April 10th, the date of a little bookish surprise! Stay tuned.

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About Hannah Gaudette

Author. Farmer. Daughter of the King of Kings.
This entry was posted in Bookish Things, Writing, Writing Tips. Bookmark the permalink.

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