Everyone has something to say about writer’s block. Which is ironic, isn’t it? Solutions for writer’s block are everywhere.
Here’s the truth: writer’s block IS REAL, but not all writer’s block is the same. There’s a cause-effect relationship between the times your words are flowing and the times they aren’t. Unfortunately, most of the advice floating around the internet is about the same, but a creative’s problems require creative solutions!
1. Seek help
Some of you are going to roll your eyes at this one, and that’s ok, but when I’m really stuck I pray. Others on the admin team practice manifesting, meditation, or alternative forms of connecting beyond the self. Some of us are lucky enough to have great sounding boards in our friends and family members! If there is something you believe in, someone that helps you, don’t forget about it when you’re trying to get words on paper.
2. Diagnose your problem
Sometimes, you have to go backward to move forward. If the issue is that what you’ve written already isn’t quite clicking, take some time to analyze and doctor what you’ve got before adding any more.
3. Recharge your creativity
Sometimes, you’re too depleted to create, and that’s okay. Our fearless leader, Allie, has some great words of wisdom on how to recharge to get your creative motivation back.
4. Take care of yourself
How much of your mental fatigue can be blamed on poor sleep habits? You may be surviving on coffee and tea (like me) but caffeine can dehydrate and steal your mental power if you’re not drinking water, too. Shoot, you’d be flabbergasted at the difference some Gatorade or a multivitamin can make in your energy and focus! Sleep if you need to, eat when you need to. Exercise, get fresh air, and see your doctors when you need to. Take care of your body as a whole.
5. Try a writing warm-up
Freeing your mind of all the thoughts and ideas floating around in there is powerful. Try engaging in a writing warm-up as a way of brain-dumping to get you back on track.
6. Read a book in your genre
Just like your body, your brain needs time to just relax on occasion. When your imagination is exhausted and you can’t put a finger on what your own book is missing, kill two birds with one stone. Enjoy someone else’s story, and see what ideas spark in the meantime. While you’re at it, support another mom writer!
7. Reduce distraction
We’re all moms here, and we know how impossible that sounds, but there are ways to reduce the problem of distraction. Prioritize your time, and give yourself permission to stop overcommitting. Step back from over-marketing on social media. Mental clutter and unnecessary stress aren’t conducive to creativity. Take an honest look at all of the things you’re trying to juggle. Chances are, at least some of those things aren’t paying back the effort you put into them.
8. Try switching projects
Sometimes the thing you’ve been working on just needs to simmer in your skull for a while. Stimulate yourself by working on something you can be passionate about right now. You can always come back to this project later, and then you’ll be able to look at it through a fresh lens, without the shutters of pure frustration currently inhibiting your process.
9. Organize your thoughts
Moms Who Write has partnered with some killer programs like Scrivener and Plottr. These awesome tools can help you visualize, reorder, and keep track of your storylines. If you’re like me, always losing your sticky notes or forgetting which notebook stores the plot point you’re looking for, these programs can be lifesavers. You’ll never Where was I going with that? again.
10. Learn to let go
Unused words are not a waste! I keep a “deleted scenes” file for every WIP. That not only eases the pain of deleted precious moments in the first place; it gives me the chance to compare the replacement scene to decide if it’s actually an improvement. Bonus, with a little tweaking, I can often recycle the scene later in the story, or even scavenge the descriptions for a scene in a completely different project!
Before I joined the team at Moms Who Write, I once maintained my own blog of writing advice especially geared for pantsers. My original post on writer’s block has even more fun and unique ideas to beat the block in any genre! And of course, don’t forget to explore the MWW Patreon, where you’ll have access to tons of original resources and counsel from other mom writers who have been where you’re at now.
About the Writer: Kathryn Tamburri (@KathrynTamburriAuthor) writes clean YA epic fantasy novels which seethe with slow-burn romance. You can find more of her writing tips on The Devo Blog at KathrynTamburri.com, and learn from her publishing journey by subscribing to her fun author newsletter!