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Blocking Out Writer’s Block

Writer’s block: a condition authors are challenged with on the daily. If you’re unsure if you’ve ever experienced the dreaded phenomenon, have you ever…

  • had a story in mind, but when it came to writing it down or typing it up, you felt stuck – as if the words refused to come out on the paper?
  • faced feelings of anxiety, or even depression, when it comes to writing your story?
  • not been able to think about the next word in your story – let alone the next line or chapter?

If so… you’ve experienced it – and although challenging, it is not uncommon, and it’s important to remember you are not alone.

Personally, I’ve had to combat writer’s block plenty of times in my life. Whether for a school paper, creative writing exercise or this exact blog post, writer’s block has haunted me one way or another.

For starters, who does writer’s block affect?

First and foremost, although some may think writer’s block mainly happens to first-time writers, the truth is writer’s block happens to almost everyone, even the most seasoned authors. Most writers are faced with such difficulties at some point in their career.

Why does writer’s block occur?

There could be numerous reasons as to why writer’s block occurs, all unique to each individual. Understanding why you have writer’s block could be the first step in combating it.

Maybe you:

  1. Have too few or too many ideas
  2. Are lacking creativity or motivation
  3. Are burned out
  4. Have self-doubt that’s getting in the way

Or maybe… you’re simply unsure of what’s causing your writer’s block, and that’s okay. No need to worry if this is you – not knowing what causes writer’s block is common for many people, and most importantly, you can still overcome it.

How to block out writer’s block:

There’s a vast number of techniques that are proven to help individuals overcome their writer’s block. Finding the method that works for you and your writing style may take a few tries, but it will be worth it in the end. The following methods may work for you:

  • Write about your struggles: Writing about your difficulties with writer’s block may help you feel relieved – as if a weight has been lifted. Journaling can also be used as a creative outlet for you to express and release any negative emotions.
  • Change your environment/location: Sometimes a change of scenery, although it may be simple, can be just what you need to get your creativity to flow.
  • Get active and go for a walk/run: Similar to a change of scenery, going for a walk or a run can be a great time to let go and destress.
  • Start your story in the middle: Stories don’t have to be written in any exact order. Next time you’re having a hard time writing, try writing the heart of your story first and expanding on ideas from the middle out.
  • Mind mapping: For those who are visual learners, mind mapping can be a useful tactic. To mind map, write your main topic in the middle of a sheet of paper. From there, connect subtopics to the larger topic. This technique allows for creativity when organizing your map, as you can draw it however is most useful.
  • Join a writing group: A writing group can help provide emotional support throughout your experience with writer’s block, especially writers who have shared similar struggles.

The above are just a few ways you can block out your writer’s block. So, next time you find yourself struggling to write, try one out!

If you find yourself needing extra help, you can try Burning Soul Collective’s One Month Manuscript – a challenge including 30 days of thoughtful and powerful writing prompts to push you to write. Or you can join Burning Soul Writers – a community of writers to not only connect with but a community to hold you accountable.

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