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writer's block vent

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Brandon808 posted 9/17/2013 16:54 PM

The fact that I have it at all is progress. I've been into creative writing since high school, but I put it aside for a long time because I didn't really have much confidence in my abilities. I finally started writing again and have even begun writing my first book. Problem is that I haven't written much in the past week. It's getting a little frustrating and vicious cycle that it is the frustration with writer's block only makes me more blocked. So I thought I'd post (i.e. write) about it here in hopes of working it out a bit.

Amazonia posted 9/17/2013 17:03 PM

Have you seen the recent article Disney put out about writing? They had what I thought were some really good tips I hadn't heard before on writers block.

Brandon808 posted 9/17/2013 17:25 PM

No, I haven't. I tried searching for it but it didn't turn up.

travels posted 9/17/2013 17:39 PM

Are you going to NaNo this year? I've found it helps me turn off the editor in me.

Brandon808 posted 9/17/2013 17:46 PM

I'm afraid I'm not familiar with NaNo either.

ETA: I've been out of the writing game for a long time.

[This message edited by Brandon808 at 5:49 PM, September 17th, 2013 (Tuesday)]

travels posted 9/17/2013 17:52 PM

November is National Novel Writing Month. You write a 50,000 word novel in one month.
It's fun and a chore all at the same time.

Sending you a PM.

Amazonia posted 9/17/2013 18:25 PM

Whoops, that's because it was Pixar, not Disney.

Eranda posted 9/17/2013 19:48 PM

Well... I wrote a book, but I did it in 125 small parts LOL. Wrote as I was inspired and then put it all together. Takes care of writer's block LOL.

Clarrissa posted 9/17/2013 20:01 PM

I write a bit myself and have run into major writers block. What helps me (usually) is to just set it aside for a few days - don't even think about it. After a few days, I go back and either reread from the beginning to recapture the flow or the last few pages. I can usually go on from there.

I don't know about you but I'm not the kind of writer who uses an outline or synopsis for my stories, my writing borders on stream-of-consciousness almost. I'll have just a basic idea of what I want to happen and at some point or other, the plot will go on an unplanned tangent.

Hope you get past the blockage soon. I know how frustrating it can be.

Brandon808 posted 9/17/2013 20:10 PM

Thanks! Very cool article.

I came across a website that specializes in serialized stories. Writers can post a new installment (i.e. chapter) each month. I'll PM you the website.

Yeah, I used to write stream of consciousness too. This book is the first time I've really gotten a story thought out and semi-structured. I prefer mind-mapping to outlining though.

caregiver9000 posted 9/17/2013 20:22 PM

I attended a seminar where the suggestion was to take a written piece (essay, poem) and to mirror the style with your own topic. Having the framework to follow opens the door and once I start being creative, I can usually take it from there.

Sometimes great lyrics/music can jump start creativity for me too.

Good luck!

Clarrissa posted 9/17/2013 20:22 PM

I did most of my writing before Dday, even wrote a series but unfortunately *all* my stories became victims of the aftermath. Why is another post, different forum.

Anyway, I got back into writing after getting an unsolicited email from a "business" purporting to help writers pitch show ideas... for a fee of course. I decided to redo a previous story. Same characters and same basic plotline but setting and character relationships are different. I haven't worked on it in a while though (busy keeping jrc supplied with blankets ) but hopefully I'll have the time to get back to it soon.

Good luck with the story. Hope it starts flowing again real soon.

[This message edited by Clarrissa at 8:24 PM, September 17th (Tuesday)]

Brandon808 posted 9/17/2013 21:19 PM

That's a good idea. Music sometimes helps my thought process so I'll try to put together a playlist or something.

Hope you can get back to your writing. Thanks for the support.

lynnm1947 posted 9/18/2013 11:13 AM

I spent a lot of my working life as a writer. Iíve always found that what works when I have writerís block is to write. Anything. At. All. Type inĒ The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dogĒ and then write a scenario around that! Chances are your block is about your main writing project. If you allow your mind free rein to write something else creative, you can loosen up your block. I find the same thing works in my painting. If I find no ideas flowing, I simply set out some paint, a paintbrush, a sheet of paper and just P.A.I.N.T., just move some colour around in a very loose manner. Moving words around, moving paint around, serves to keep your mind fluid and thatís when ideas rush in.

Brandon808 posted 9/18/2013 13:41 PM

You make an excellent point. I'm blocked on a specific story but maybe writing anything will help my get going again.

simplydevastated posted 9/18/2013 14:22 PM

Writing anything seems to help me. I've written poems, short stories and even a personal essay about my personal life. It helps to clear my mind so I can focus.

I've also connected with a lot of writers on Twitter (send me a pm if you want to connect on Twitter) which has helped a great deal.

Some advice...don't try to edit while you're writing. I've fallen into the trap and it has set me back.

Remember, just writing a sentence or a paragraph is a step in the right direction. Keep moving forward.

brooke4 posted 9/19/2013 12:37 PM

I have also spent a lot of my career as a working writer and I had an unfinished book under contract on D-day.

I will say, it's very difficult in the aftermath of infidelity to pull up your socks and write. I know my brain was pretty overloaded and not really firing on all cylinders.

There was a good month where I couldn't even try, but I really didn't have a choice, so got back down to it.

What worked for me was to go back to my previous routine - times of day, place, etc. It was like my brain was wired to slip back into writing mode when the conditions were familiar. I also found that doing a good, long run several times a week (ipod on, not consciously thinking about anything) really helped. I was surprised by how often I came home with an idea.

Other things that can help are joining a critique group or finding a critique partner, because then you're forced to produce on a regular basis, doing workshops, and I hate to say it--having long hated these--but doing exercises. Sometimes even something as simple as writing a page where your character is doing something not in your story--i.e. waiting in line at the grocery store, can help get you going.

And when all else fails, read Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott.

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