Tuesday, February 24, 2015

How I Addressed Last Weekend's Writer's Block

A huge part of writing fiction for me is immersing myself in another time, place, character's head, etc. When writing fiction with strong historical and paranormal elements, that flow of ideas is constantly being interrupted by researching facts, which considerably slows down the process. Obviously, any idea I wish to develop must first be checked for plausibility.

So having been stuck on Kellen's chapter seven for several weeks (which is a long chapter, and it's not like I haven't made any progress, I have) and getting more frustrated by the day, here's what I've done/been doing. Now I'm not really sure if any of it works or will work, but staring at a blank screen isn't helpful either.

1) Surfing the internet looking for visual or written cues to spark inspiration.

    Wasn't effective this time, but I did try.

2) Music breaks.

    Usually works like a charm. Not this time. Although Timothy and Daniel did turn me on to some new songs that I enjoyed.

3) Rereading all the previous Kellen chapters.

    Did this on Friday night. Didn't help the writer's block, but I was extremely happy with what I've already written. I reminded myself all these other chapters were also slow in the making, which did encourage me, even if it didn't get the imagination flowing.

4)  Stepping away to watch "Futurama" with Daniel.

     Could have enjoyed it more, if I hadn't kept thinking, "Damn it, I'm losing the weekend."

5) Breaking down the chapter into manageable scenes and then into more manageable paragraphs, with ap promise to myself that I'd peck at it during the week.

    That is where most of the production happened and subsequent writing happened, this past weekend and the two previous weekends. However, my brain is usually too soft at night for any fiction writing once I get back to Ellis Island. In short, I end up getting pissed off because I know I'm lying to myself even as I'm making the promise.

6) Giving some love to other creative endeavors that have little or nothing to do with writing.

    That is the plan for this weekend. I'm on call, which can be an unpredicably light or heavy work weekend. So Sarah and I are planning to catch up on a visual project I began for a non-profit. Amongst these activities, I'm going to check out those paragraph breakdowns, give myself a deadline (I will write this section in the next hour) and then just DO IT.

If anything, maybe one of these ideas will work for YOUR writer's block.

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