Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Block Head

Writer's Block.

Just the words are enough to send quivers of fear down my spine. Yet, I struggle with it regularly. Constantly. Did I mention I have problems with it all the time?

There are seldom times I don't fight with my muse. It's an ongoing thing... a struggle for power. Problem is, if I win, so does the muse -- because the story gets written. If she wins, I lose. If she wins, and I'm forced to write the story SHE wants, then it's an uphill battle all the way.

Me: What if Suzy decides to...

Muse: No.

Me: Well, okay, then what should Suzy do?

Muse: Not that.

Me: Then what?

Muse: I'm sorry, did you say something?

So, what do I do?

I pull a rabbit out of my hat. Yep, that's right. I do tricks. For instance, my two personal favorites:

1. Timed writing.

I especially like to do this WITH someone. I did a thirty minute timed writing with Kealie, via IM the other day and got 1000 words! It's a great motivator, and also doesn't really let your internal editor have much of a say.

2. Prompts.

Open a book and choose the fifth line. Or the thirtieth word. Or randomly choose a page in the dictionary and choose ten words to use in your work. Go to Wikipedia and click on "random article" and use that for either a NEW story or incorporate it into your existing one.

The ideas for prompts are endless.

The biggest thing for me is to NOT STOP WRITING. It's harder to start once I've stopped for any period of time. If I make a habit of writing something (anything) every day, then I get the job done. Muse or no muse.

And I really, truly love writing.

What about you? What do you do when YOU have writer's block?

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