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Writers Block

Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by Aidan of the tavern, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. Well we've all had it at one point or another haven't we? Yep, writer's block. Often I get inspired or get a rush of creative enthusiasm, write 3 pages in one sitting (seriously, thats a lot for me), I tell myself I'm going to get that wretched book done, then the next day I don't even want to think about it. I have been writing seriously for 2 years now on one project and the dreaded block is rarely gone for long. Sometimes its just for a day or 2, the longest record is 3 or 4 months. Generally I can't think of anything to do but wait it out.

    So to cut through the waffle, what are your experiences of writer's block? How long does it last, do you get it often, or do any of you have a way of getting past it? Just curious as to how it effects other people.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  2. Butterfly

    Butterfly Auror

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    I find that it usually means there is some detail wrong in the plot so far; it could be minor, could be major. It just means I have to go back and read what I've written a few times to find what is not working out. It means I do some editing, redrafting, filling in plot holes, and looking for inconsistencies in what I have already written and that should sort out any flow problems that I have written myself into.

    If that doesn't solve it, I jump ahead and write something that is further along in the story. At the moment, the villain is calling to my muse, so I have to work with that and ignore the rest until he is sorted out.

    I also find it helps to keep plot notes for several chapters ahead, redraft ideas, things to change. I also keep spreadsheets of where I am in the redrafting process it saves trying to pick out where I left off, and urges me on in seeing how far I have already come.
     
  3. sashamerideth

    sashamerideth Maester

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    I have three WIP plus the blog. It is rare that I have a block on all works. Usually moving from one to the other gets me productive again. If I am completely dead, then I will revise work already done, or go do something unrelated. I have limited time to write, so I have to make sure I am ready to write when I sit down to it.

    I had a stretch where I didn't write for six months. I tried writing, but what I wrote was deleted the next day. I guess it was better than nothing, though I had nothing to show for it at the end of that time.

    Sent from my Blade using Forum Runner
     
  4. Motley

    Motley Minstrel

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    If something is not flowing in one of my works, I just move to another. If I don't feel like writing in any of them, I update my blog or go play Monopoly with my kids or something. I have had periods where I have not written for months, but I wouldn't call them blocks. They're more like life getting in the way.

    Blocks, in my opinion, usually stem from fear of letting yourself slip into the stream of creation, or fear that you're not good enough in some way.
     
  5. Thats interesting, Butterfly. See I don't look back at my work much as I write (obviously I will when I edit) but in terms of first draft I just focus on keeping going instead of looking back, otherwise I think "what a load of s***". However I've nearly finished the first draft so before long I will look at it in detail.
     
  6. Giant

    Giant Minstrel

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    Usually I get blocked in a chapter or scene in one of my wips, not from writing completely. When that happens I just move onto a character profile, one of the maps I am working on, or a short story. Anything I can do to keep the creative process going.

    After spending all day at work then school, when I get home I am ready to get some thoughts down. So writing at night comes easier for me because I have been waiting all day to get these ideas out of my head. If I had all day to sit and write, I think i would need to get away from the computer more often to clear my head.
     
  7. Taytortots

    Taytortots Minstrel

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    I, like Butterfly, tend to go back and Edit, however writers block for me doesn't mean that there's a plot hole. Going back through what I've written so far helps me a lot though. First, it forces me to write, even though I had writers block when attempting to go forward. I write/rewrite the problems I never realized before, which starts things off. I also tend to be inspired, which sounds a bit silly, but it honestly works. I remember exactly where I want to go from reading what was already written.
    I don't get writers block that much anymore since I stopped forcing writing. I know this isn't always a plausible solution for a lot of people who have limited time to write or have deadlines, but since I didn't make myself write, I find that I write the same amount, because I enjoy it and don't feel pressure, but my writing is also better.
     
    Aidan of the tavern likes this.
  8. Lepton

    Lepton Dreamer

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    My goodness, I feel as if I'm always suffering from writers block. I'll think that one of my ideas for a novel is extraordinarily good, and I'll have determination and motivation for a few days, but that usually disappears rather quickly, leaving me to write a different book because I simple do not want to touch the book again. This changed a few weeks ago, I've had the urge to continue writing a book, which I find more then great because I've really needed that bit of motivation.

    Its quite frustrating, but with the abundance of ideas I tend to come up with, I don't find it overall a terrible thing, it allows me to write something else and taste something new if I can't already incorporate an idea into a book I'm already writing.
     
  9. Jabrosky

    Jabrosky Banned

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    This is exactly how I feel too.
     
  10. Hmm, yes I see. I guess at the end of the day I am writing because I enjoy it, so that will keep bringing me back.
     
  11. Oh, to be a writer. When I've had enough of my main work I type up some little data files for my characters or something, but maybe I should look elswhere.
     
  12. Masronyx

    Masronyx Minstrel

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    I've always had problems with writer's block. There were times when I'd not touch a story for months on end. I either just couldn't think of the next thing that happened in the story or I basically became frustrated with writing in general. The latter reason usually happened because I did not like what I had written and suffered self doubt where the writing profession was concerned.

    I usually write a certain "section", a chapter or part of a chapter, then take a break and do other things such as read or draw. Lately, I finished what will probably be my first chapter of my WIP. I spent a little over a week thinking on and off about what happens to my main character next (considering 12 years pass between the first part and the next part.)

    I usually don't purposefully go looking for inspiration. I've found that I will often stumble upon it and go from there. This last time, I came across an old picture of my friend in a reenactment demonstration with another reenactor that sparked where I wanted to go next. He and this other person were engaged in hand to hand combat (he portrays a white man, the other guy was a Native American reenactor). It's often pictures or scenes like that that cause me to think "What is happening in that scene? What happens next? How can I use that?"

    Re thinking the way I write over the past few years has gotten me over a lot of bad writer's block moments.
     
  13. quenchy

    quenchy Dreamer

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    I'm going into writing block all the time, especially because I'm working on the same project for years. There's no way that you can end this severe condition - fighting it will result into more severe panic attacks (based on the fact that you can't figure out what to write and you're trying to do all your best).
    My methods:
    1. Write anything - I have more pages devoted to the stupid stuff that bothers me rather than actual work. I just sit down and write, write, write. It's like epic nerd-rage. When I stop, I usually realize that the pages I've written cannot be seen, ever. It's weird, kind of.
    2. Hard reset - I don't know what's the average age on the forum and if there are some people under 18 - quit reading! I get wasted. I do this rarely (in Bulgarian terms) but it helps me realize that I'm just a meatbag with some irrational ideas that won't make a difference if I write them down.
     
  14. sashamerideth

    sashamerideth Maester

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    Wow quenchy, that's a bit defeatist.

    Sent from my Blade using Forum Runner
     
  15. granddad gnome

    granddad gnome Scribe

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    having just arrived at this new phase in my life, Writing, I tend to come on here and just flop around, looking at others problems, thumb through the thread headings . That usually set me off thinking again.
     
  16. Hahahahaha, your methods are fascinating:D
     
  17. Voldermort

    Voldermort Guest

    Your answer is story structure. It tells you what you need to do next. Roadmap it. Don't write the first three pages and hope inspiration will stay with you till the end. Don't write anything. Plot it all out first. You'll have X number of sequences and lots willl be happening in each. Only start writing when you know what each is and why it's there.

    Writing has little to do with writing. It has a lot to do with thinking. If you're walking down the street and think out what's supposed to happen in a sequence, all the ins and outs, then that's writing. Putting it down on paper is the easy bit.
     
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