Not in angst or agony. I mean put your speaker on full volume, play your favourite song, and sing along at the top of your voice. Or if you’re more into dancing or playing a musical instrument, do that! Whatever it is that makes you happy and full of energy, do that with extreme intensity for 5 minutes. It’ll change your frequency from one of stagnation to one of open-mindedness.
“It usually helps me write by reading — somehow the reading gear in your head turns the writing gear.” -Steven Wright
Hahaha I can’t believe I didn’t think of this until my mum told me
This will come as an obvious remedy to most people, but if it isn’t, lemme tell you right now that reading is the best, most peaceful way to get your writing gear working again.
Science confirms that reading a novel positively affects your brain, due to the fact that blood flows to it and improves your cognitive functioning. This heightened state of brain activity is the surest way to start writing again.
“You can’t think yourself out of a writing block; you have to write yourself out of a thinking block.” ― John Rogers
Yup. I said it. Don’t kill me. Even though writing is the last thing on your mind right now, You need to force yourself to write. It doesn’t need to be your best work. It doesn’t even need to make sense! Just go ahead, put a pen to paper or your fingers on the keyboard and start writing. If you ever feel like you can’t create anything of proper meaning, the best thing you can do is write. Believe me, it works. I’m doing it right now.
“The best way in the world for breaking up a writer’s block is to write a lot.” ― John Gardner
Binge watch a TV show.
Or at least watch an episode. Whenever I feel like I’m reaching a dead end in my creative flow, I pause and watch an episode of Elementary, a Sherlock Holmes crime TV show. If you’ve never heard of it, I need you to go google it RIGHT NOW, because it is one of the best TV shows I’ve ever watched in my entire life. More on that next week.
Anyway, Elementary has some of the best screenplay and dialogues I’ve seen, so I watch it to inspire my creative senses and get back in the flow of thinking out of the box.
If you ever have the same problem, I highly recommend that you start watching Elementary now. Season 6 just ended so you might have time to catch up!
Don’t think about it.
Seriously, don’t sweat it if you can’t get your game back on. It happens. From time to time, all us writers find ourselves with a distinctly uncomfortable inability to write. And the key to getting over the obstacle of writer’s block is ACCEPTING IT. Accepting the fact that you’re not at the best of your writing abilities, and that it will take you a while to get back to normal.
The more you overthink your situation, the more you think that it’s your fault (when it definitely isn’t), the longer it will take for you to restore yourself and continue writing. Instead, focus on consistent practice. Try ripping off the choking blanket of writer’s block slowly, a little bit at a time, getting slightly better at the art with each word that you write. Put yourself in the uncomfortable position of writing every day, and soon you’ll be in a flow that no one will be able to derail you from.
So, as a piece of advice from one writer to another, if there’s anything you should take away from this post, it’s this:
“You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it.
That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.”
― Octavia E. Butler