Writer’s block is a condition, primarily associated with writing as a profession, in which an author loses the ability to produce new work. The condition varies widely in intensity. It can be trivial, a temporary difficulty in dealing with the task at hand. At the other extreme, some “blocked” writers have been unable to work for years on end, and some have even abandoned their careers. It can manifest as the affected writer viewing their work as inferior or unsuitable, when in fact it could be the opposite. (source: Wikipedia)
Well, many state that this can be a result of a lack of inspiration or a temporary block in creativity. Some may find it odd that writer’s can come upon a time when they are unable to write as writing is as natural as breathing to us. But there are times when our brains get fried and absolutely nothing wants to come out.
There is also the issue of self doubt. I have doubted myself and my abilities many times. As a result I am unknowingly promoting my own writer’s block. Don’t begin your day with doubt as to your ability and skill in writing.
I have several techniques that often help me to rid myself of this pesky block. Taking a break is the most common remedy. Sometimes, writer’s tend to overwork themselves. This is not a good practice as the human brain does need to relax.
For freelancers it is easy to want to work all day and every day as this is our main source of income. Unlike a regular job, work does not time out for us. In fact, there have been times when I would work from 10 in the morning straight back till midnight just because I can. It is important for freelancers and writers in general to treat their work as they would if they were hired at a company. Below I will list a few tips that will help to rid writer’s of this pesky block. It really all boils down to how you view work and how often you do work.
- Set time for work and time for rest.
- Allot 6-8 hours to your writing and try to relax on weekends.
- Take periodic breaks during the day (watch a television program, make some coffee, check your Facebook etc).
- Get up and stretch. Take a walk around your house or yard.
- Take a nap (this works wonders).
WHAT TO DO NEXT?
There are often times when writer’s may be unable to write for days, weeks, months and even years. Before it gets that bad there are a few things you can do to help stimulate your mind.
- Stop writing. Yes, I said it. Just stop. If you have found yourself sitting in front of your computer for hours and the cursor is still flickering on that empty page. Stop.
- Take a few days off and away from home. Go to a park, art exhibit, music concert etc.
- Travel with a notepad and write down anything that comes to mind. Or, take a camera and snap anything that interests you.
This helps to refresh the brain especially if it is in dire need of time away from the computer screen. You will also find inspiration in the oddest of places. Just allow yourself and your mind to explore.
In closing, writer’s block is a nuisance to all writers. But even the best of us encounter it at one point or another. The key is to rest. Rest is good for the mind. If you were lifting heavy objects all day, your body will begin to ache and you will be in need of a nap or a massage. Apply this concept to your writing. The brain will get tired. Allow it to rest, and it will pay you back with a masterpiece.