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Posts tagged ‘writer’s block’

How to overcome writer’s block

No matter what professional or recreational activities we may engage in, at some point, we’re all going to be off of our game. A surgeon may struggle with shaky hands, a public speaker may slip into a bit of a stutter, or any other number of samples can apply. But in many cases, these problems are more mental than they are physical.

One of the most notorious examples in the world of literature is that pesky little condition known as writers block.

writer's block

Photo courtesy of Marya Jan

First off, make no mistake, it happens to everyone.

But as I can suggest by personal experience, there is really only one reliable way to deal with it and overcome this problem – writing through it.

Whether you are a sports fan or not, the easiest way to explain what I mean is through the world or athletics. Let’s take baseball. Even the best and most productive hitters in the game fall into a slump from time to time. During those slumps a pitch that they might normally knock right out of the park might send them to the bench as a victim of a strikeout. And worse yet, it keeps happening over and over again. But how does the hitter finally break out of the slump? He keeps hacking away until he succeeds and gets back into his typical rhythm.

The same approach should and must be taken when you find yourself in a state of writer’s block.

Here are two practical ways to do so:

1. Write for the sake or writing during a case of block. Just keep going despite the quality. This is essentially exercise and nobody ever even has to see what you write.

2. Use the condition as inspiration. Yes, write something, anything, about writer’s block. A few yea’s back I had a poetry assignment I had to write for a class and just couldn’t get going. So, I decided to write the poem about the need to be inspired. In the end, I got an A.

In the end, when you take the time to work through the frustration, things will work out just fine.

What do you do when you get writer’s block?

It happens to all of us.

Whether you are a novice writer and simply write for pleasure or you are an experienced professional earning his or her living with the art of writing, we are all equals when it comes to writer’s block. This phenomenon does not discriminate.

So, when a case settles upon us, what are we supposed to do about it? How should we handle it?

Think in terms of sports.

Perhaps you’re and athlete or sports fan and maybe you’re not. It doesn’t really matter. The point it, the following analogy might just be helpful.

Let’s take the game of baseball for example. When a batter seems to be struggling at the plate, unable to make contact or hit anything that will get him on base, what does he do? He keeps stepping up to the plate. Perhaps he’ll change some element of his swing or stance but the important thing is that he keeps  taking his turn at bat.

That’s essentially what writers have to do. We just have to keep writing. Sure, for a while your work might seem like useless dribble but that’s OK. Eventually, like the baseball player, you’ll come out of your slump.

And oddly enough, I find that a lot of the most creative and skillful writing comes just when you work your way out of a bad case of writer’s block.

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