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10 Ways to Kill Writer's Block

Updated on February 20, 2016

How to write when you can't write

I am no expert in writing, but I can definitely claim intimate knowledge about writer's block. We go way back. And I mean waaaaaay back. To give you a very recent example, the idea for this article came to me when I was really trying to write about something else. But then it happened...

I stared and stared at the blank page in front of me and could not think of anything to write. So I started doing a few things that have helped me in this situation before, and suddenly - in the middle of a deep conversation with my teddy bear (see more about talking to inanimate objects below) I got the idea for this article instead and I set my other project aside for now.

Photo: This and all other photos in this article belong to me, unless otherwise specified.

writer's block, kitten
writer's block, kitten

You're not alone

Writer's block is a psychological barrier that simply hinders you in getting words down on paper. But it can be overcome. Try out some (or all) of the tips below, and take comfort in knowing that you are in good company. According to Wikipedia, the writer F. Scott Fitzgerald ("The Great Gatsby") and cartoonist Charles M. Schultz ("Peanuts") have reputedly both struggled with writer's block.

Photo: This is my cat, Robin Hood, who comes with me everywhere. When he was a kitten he loved sitting by my desktop keyboard. His favourite game that age was hit-Mommy's-fingers-while-she-is-typing, but here he has fallen asleep with boredom. Not much typing going on when Mommy has writer's block...

#1: Skip it!

(for now)

If you are writing something chronologically and get stuck, try skipping this particular part and jump ahead in time. Jump to something more interesting, something that you cannot wait to write. Maybe you even have a whole different project going on, or an idea for one? Take this time to get some work done on this, even if the deadline is not as close as the original. Some writers in fact prefer having more than one project going at once, to prevent boredom or simply to keep a fresh interest in what they are writing.

You can always come back to this part that you are struggling with now, and hopefully feeling refreshed and inspired.

For dummies - Because we all have got to start somewhere

Writing Fiction For Dummies
Writing Fiction For Dummies

Okay, I was really only going to include this for comic relief. "Writing for dummies, ha ha!" But when I started reading about it I realised I actually want this book. Have a look inside and you'll see what I mean.

From the Amazon preview it not only seems like a useful guide, but it is also well-written, as well as impressivley organised and easy to follow. It covers everything from strategic planning to polishing off the finished product.

105 five-star reviews says this is a book to keep in mind for people in need of a little inspiration and strategic help in their writing.

 

#2: Write anyway.

Write anything. Anything at all. Stream-of-consciousness writing can help you back on track. Find a piece of paper and a pen and write absolute nonsense, if you want. Make sure your pen does not leave the paper, this is the most important thing. Writing down what goes on in your head is like tricking the mind to write around your writer's block. This writing is for no one but yourself to see. You can even throw away the piece of paper without looking at it. The point is that you are writing.

Do you find it hard to even get started with this exercise? Write about what you see outside your window. Write about what you are wearing or what you wish you were wearing. Write about what you were just reading on the internet when you were supposed to write. Just write something. Write about how hard it is to write something.

Bonus tip: Be playful!

The Writer's Toolbox: Creative Games and Exercises for Inspiring the 'Write' Side of Your   Brain
The Writer's Toolbox: Creative Games and Exercises for Inspiring the 'Write' Side of Your Brain

Yes, it is a toy. But what a fun toy!

This kit provides you with sixty exercise sticks divided between first sentences, a transition, and the climax of your story. There are so many different ways these stories can turn out, and they are brilliant to use as a starting point. There is also the Protagonist Wheel and the Sixth Sense deck of cards, not to mention four story wheels and a timer. You can sit down on your own and use the promts as inspiration, or you can even play it with others.

Set up as a game, The Writer's Toolbox is especially good for classroom writing - both for young and adult writers. Personally I found this toolbox while I was on vacation and could not really fit it in my already stuffed suitcase. I ended up giving some of my things to charity just so I could take this box home with me! And I have not regretted it. I have had hours of fun playng with it.

And the best part is that it reminds me of why I started writing in the first place: because it is fun!

 

Inside my Writer's Toolbox kit:

#3: Use magnetic poetry

Try playing around with words, using magnetic poetry. Or even cut some words out from a newspaper. Put them all together in a bowl and draw six words. Play around with them until you have a sentence, or six sentences, or more. Do not worry if they fit into what you are writing right now or not. Just play and see what comes up.

Or you can put the box next to the fridge and encourage your parents, room mate, partner, spouse, kids, or visiting friends to create something with them, which in turn might give you some inspiration. The clue is to have fun with words again, and to make writing feel less like a chore.

Photo used under Creative Commons from Steve A Johnson

Magnetic Poetry Magnetic Poetry Writer's Remedy
Magnetic Poetry Magnetic Poetry Writer's Remedy

Ahh, just the name - "Writer's remedy: The Cure for Writer's Block" - sounds reassuring. This is bottled magnetic medicine for writers in need!

Put encouraging messages to yourself on the fridge (for when you go looking for comfort food) or a magnetic board above your desk. Beware, if you leave the words out on you fridge, I promise that they will turn into an irresistible activity for the whole family.

 

#4: Keep a notebook with you at all times

Even when you sleep

Write ideas down as soon as you think of them. Do not think you will remember them later, because odds are you will only remember that you had a great idea - not what it was about. Imagine the bestseller you could have written if only you had a notebook with you when you thought of it!

My ideas often come to me late at night as I am about to fall asleep. Or I wake up in the middle of the night from a strange dream and think "That would make a good story." Many times I have thought I will remember these ideas in the morning, but I never have. Then I started keeping a notebook and a pen by the bed, and could write the ideas down right away. This notebook doubles as a dream journal, for those really memorable dreams.

My favourite notebooks from Amazon

Moleskine Classic Notebook, Large, Plain, Black, Hard Cover (5 x 8.25) (Classic Notebooks)
Moleskine Classic Notebook, Large, Plain, Black, Hard Cover (5 x 8.25) (Classic Notebooks)

Many opt for the unpretentious yet stylish notebooks by Moleskine, famously favoured by Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso and Ernest Hemingway. They come in a variety of sizes and colours, including little pocket sized books that are perfect for carrying around everywhere.

 
Blossoming Branches Journal (Magnetic Closure) (Notebook, Diary)
Blossoming Branches Journal (Magnetic Closure) (Notebook, Diary)

This is such a stunning notebook! The magnetic panel that folds over the front will help protecting the book when you keep it in your purse. Good quality paper with faint lines help you keep your writing neat (without lines my handwriting is terrible and all over the page).

 

#5: Word of the day

Treat yourself to a word of the day calendar, and decide to use that word in a sentence that day. You may end up not using all the sentences for anything in particular, but simply see it as a writing exercise to keep your creative juices flowing. Make it a fun challenge!

Sometimes just a simple word can set you off into a writing frenzy, either from the word itself or something that you associate with it. And if nothing else it might expand your vocabulary, which – especially for a writer – is never a bad thing.

365 New Words-a-Year 2013 Page-A-Day Calendar
365 New Words-a-Year 2013 Page-A-Day Calendar

Any calendar that includes the word higgledy-piggledy gets my vote! Keep it by your computer, and try not to look ahead. I dare you.

 

#6: Kill your inner editor

Yes, you will need your inner editor for the actual editing of your work, but right now all you really want is to get some words down on the paper or onto the screen. Going back to read what you have just written will make this sometimes-not-very-helpful voice in your head point out all spelling errors and logical problems. Rather than moving on and floating on your creative progress you end up spending your time perfecting what you have already written. But what you have already written is already there and will not go anywhere (assuming you back it up properly, which I really recommend doing). What you need right now is to keep moving and get the story going. Get the words down and come back and edit when your first draft is finish.

Fun and motivating - Which is really what we need, isn't it?

No Plot? No Problem!: A Low-Stress, High-Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel in 30 Days
No Plot? No Problem!: A Low-Stress, High-Velocity Guide to Writing a Novel in 30 Days

Chris Baty, the brain behind National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) - where thousands of people worldwide sign up to write a novel in 30 days - has written a book on how to do just that. This is a great guide to help you ignore that nagging voice of your inner editor and just. get. words. down. on. paper.

 
Gertrude Street, Melbourne
Gertrude Street, Melbourne

#7: Go for a walk

Walking is almost meditative when you are on your own. It relaxes your mind and body, and gives you some fresh input - not to mention fresh air (sitting for hours in a stuffy room staring at a blank page or an empty computer screen does nothing for your creativity). Exercise is good for you. It will help blood circulation and clear your mind. There is no end to the reasons why you should go for a walk!

But remember what I said before, about keeping a pen and notebook with you at all times. Imagine the stress of coming up with your best idea ever, and not have anything to write on! You do not necessarily have to actively look for something to write about, but if you do come up with something at least you can relax knowing that you have a way of writing it down where you are.

Photo: You never know what you might see on a walk around your neighbourhood. Something as seemingly insignificant as a shadow in a window can get your imagination going. I took this photo in Gertrude Street, Melbourne (Australia) on a late winter evening, and keep coming back to it for inspiration.

"Above all, do not loose your desire to walk. Every day I walk myself into a state of well-being and walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it."

~ Sren Kierkegaard

#8: Disconnect the Internet

Yes, I can see why you think having a little look at the internet might inspire you. Yes, I am sure creating a relevant folder on Pinterest and then pin everything that has even the smallest relation to what you are writing might help you. And yes, of course looking at funny cats who cannot spell is exactly what you need right now. But the truth is one never has a "little" look at the internet. You open the web browser in the name of research, and then find yourself looking at your friend's colleague's distant cousin's wedding photos on Facebook three hours later. I bet mindless browsing is why you are sitting here reading this article right now (get back to writing!).

#9: Talk to your teddy bear

No, I have not gone crazy. Well, no more than usual, anyway. If you are stuck trying to formulate a sentence or cannot come up with a way to explain something, this is the exercise for you. Find an inanimate object (any inanimate object will do, but I usually find it helpful talking to something with a face) and explain to him/ her/ it what it is that you are trying to say. Yes, it will make you feel silly, and no, the teddy bear will most likely not talk back (and if it does I do not think I can help you anymore), but suddenly you might discover that the words coming out of your mouth are exactly the words you wanted to write down.

However: I would not recommend trying to talk to your cat. Cats tend to look at you as though you are crazy and then walk away. You do not need that right now (yes, I speak from experience).

Photo used under Creative Commons from Teddy Delivery

How about a colourful plotbunny?

A "plot bunny" is an idea for a story which will not go away until written. It can lead you into a magic rabbit hole of unexpected ideas, but at least it will keep you writing. I think having an actual plot bunny sitting on my desk would make me very happy. Inspired, I mean. Inspired.

Schylling Stripes The Long Earred Bunny
Schylling Stripes The Long Earred Bunny

"Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen." --John Steinbeck

 

#10: Change medium

If you use a computer, try writing on paper. If you are writing on paper try the computer. A change in medium can change the way you think of writing. Personally I find that when writing something with a pen on paper there seems to be a direct connection from my brain to my hand, and writing flows more easily. But a friend of mine claims the opposite as she says she types faster than hand writing and therefore is able to get her ideas down quicker when using a computer.

Or what about trying a typewriter? There is nothing like the loud clicking of the keys as the black ink is hammered onto white paper, is there?

This poster is available at Allposters.

Poll: Tell me about your writing habits

What is your medium of choice for writing?

See results

There are plenty of difficult obstacles in your path. Don't allow yourself to become one of them.

~ Ralph Marston

Don't forget to share this with a poor struggling writer who might just be suffering right now.

And finally: what are your best tips for beating writer's block?

Thank you for stopping by - And good luck!

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Great tips ....and they work!

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 4 years ago from United States

      These are great suggestions! You know, it is true! Some of my best ideas and suggestions come to me while I am sleeping. I really do wake up and make notes.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Sylvestermouse: Thank you! I do too, all the time! Used to drive me crazy before I got the notebook-by-the-bed idea.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Fantastic! I am glad you like them!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I think my biggest problem is the distractions - the internet being one of them! Great tips!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Me too. The internet is definitely my biggest distraction!

    • profile image

      ericsdorsey 4 years ago

      I think of my best material for writing when I'm lying in bed and nothing is going on around me. With a full time job and two children under 3 running around the house, I definitely don't have the time to write without distractions. Great lens! Thank you for sharing.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @ericsdorsey: I can imagine! Thank you for reading, and good luck!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @iwrite100: Glad you like it :)

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 4 years ago from Arkansas USA

      Awesome advice! My best tip is one you included, to just write. Procrastination doesn't help at all so once I get past that, just writing helps to get my creative juices flowing.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @SusanDeppner: Thank you for blessing my lens, I really appreciate it! It has made me very, very happy!

    • Teapixie LM profile image

      Tea Pixie 4 years ago

      Fab advice. I keep dropping the walking part and it's impacting my brain. This time of year, where I live, is when the blooms start so it's worth my time to get out there. Thank you so much for the great reminder.

    • Board-Game-Brooke profile image

      C A Chancellor 4 years ago from US/TN

      Great tips! Pinning your article to my creative writing board. :-)

    • Jerzimom profile image

      Cheryl Fay Mikesell 4 years ago from Ladysmith, WI

      Good tips! Much needed! Thanks!

    • dawnsnewbeginning profile image

      dawnsnewbeginning 4 years ago

      Sometimes I have to write down different things for a lens and then put them in the order I want them to be later.

    • IMKZRNU2 profile image

      IMKZRNU2 4 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      Great lens! You covered an important one of always having a notebook with you. That way you will have lots of ideas to choose from to write about if you get writer's block.

    • profile image

      wetnosedogs 4 years ago

      Glad to read your tips. Love your bunny one - my cat walks away from me too when I talk to him. LOL.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @wetnosedogs: The best thing would be to talk to a dog, I think. They seem to always look at you like you're really clever and then wag their tail expectantly... Yes, a dog would be best :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @IMKZRNU2: Thank you! I even make sure I have a notebook next to me when I'm on the treadmill - you never know!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @dawnsnewbeginning: Good idea! It's really best to get the ideas down on paper before they disappear, and then do the fiddly bits later.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Jerzimom: Glad to be of help!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Board-Game-Brooke: Thank you! I really appreciate that :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Teapixie LM: Glad to be of service! A walk can do so much for you. I live in the city, but there is a park nearby, so I often go there. It is summer here in Australia, and the trees and flowers smell beautifully!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Dave Lynch: It is kind of like that, but photo based. You create differently themed folders, or boards, and share with others. The photos are linked to the original source, where you can view the website it is from. It's a good way to spread the word about something. People can even pin our Squidoo lenses to their pinning boards (the P next to the facebook, Google and Squidoo like buttons). I think it's great fun!

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      RuralFloridaLiving 4 years ago

      Great tips! I like your products too.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @RuralFloridaLiving: Thank you so much :)

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      I really loved your suggestions for a typewriter on ebay. I think I'm gonna look for one, actually. I'd looooooooove to have one in my library/guestroom/sewing room/subterranean cave when I've got some shelves up! :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Sounds like a cool room! I would want a typewriter there too! :)

    • wolfdish profile image

      wolfdish 4 years ago

      Teddy Bear talking, GOOD...Cat, not good...got it :) These blocks can be frustrating and a lens like this with its injected humor really help...thanks :)

    • profile image

      DebMartin 4 years ago

      2, 4, 7, 8 and 10 always work for me. Good advice here. thanks! d

    • daisychainsaw lm profile image

      daisychainsaw lm 4 years ago

      Lots of inspiration here, thanks! I like the idea of a typewriter as well!

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 4 years ago

      @Aibrean82: Works for me. :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @flycatcherrr: Glad to hear it :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @daisychainsaw lm: I just love typewriters!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @DebMartin: Thank you for stopping by :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @wolfdish: I'm so glad you like it! Thank you for your SquidLike and comment :)

    • Margaret Schindel profile image

      Margaret Schindel 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      Terrific job, Ada! I know from experience than many of these work, and I'm looking forward to trying the others.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Margaret Schindel: Thank you, and a double thank you for the blessing! It is truly appreciated :)

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 4 years ago from USA

      You have some great suggestions to help beat writer's block. Sometimes we just need to do something totally different so that we get a new perspective on things. I still write in a steno tablet and keep a small notebook in my pocket when I am out of the house. It's a teacher's habit that comes in handy as a writer.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @favored: Thank you for commenting and thank you so much for the blessing! Every blessing is such a lovely surprise :)

    • justramblin profile image

      justramblin 4 years ago

      Nice hints to remember. I agree with you, pen and paper bedside can be really helpful. I'm going to remember your tip #2 write anyway. That's a good one. Thanks for sharing.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @justramblin: Thank you for stopping by :)

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      FashionMommy 4 years ago

      The use of magnetic poetry I think is a good idea. Nicely done!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @FashionMommy: Thank you!

    • profile image

      Toy-Tester 4 years ago

      #6: Kill your inner editor - need to do this constantly... thanks for the great lens and some cool resources. Magnetic poetry... way cool

    • PNWGuy profile image

      PNWGuy 4 years ago

      Excellent and very helpful lens. I like the varied choices of helpful tools and items.

    • LizMac60 profile image

      Liz Mackay 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      Great ideas for keeping writing. I have used some of these ideas and more when I am writing poetry. Blessed.

    • victoria91 lm profile image

      victoria91 lm 4 years ago

      This is a great lens.

    • profile image

      teach 4 years ago

      Love it! My biggest challenge is killing the inner editor as I work...and sometimes just getting up and walking away for a while really helps. Thanks for sharing!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Toy-Tester: I struggle with the same thing! And the magnetic poetry was something I discovered by accident. And I love it!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @PNWGuy: Thank you very much :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @LizMac60: Thank you, and another BIG thank you for the blessing!

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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @victoria91 lm: Thank you so much!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @teach: Oh, that's one of my biggest challenges too. Thank you for taking the time to comment :)

    • profile image

      olayanjugto 4 years ago

      Thanks for the wonderful write up

    • Spiderlily321 profile image

      Spiderlily321 4 years ago

      Great tips. I have often had writer's block. My fiance' and I got it while working on our book. We took some time off to do other things and then came back at it with fresh ideas and had it published. Great lens. Angel blessed!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Excellent suggestions. Ultimately I just have to stop making excuses, sit down and start writing.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Great fun and interesting way to overcome writers block. I always look at the photos my husband and I have taken over the years. I can always find something different. Plus you can use the photos in your article so it is a double I also wrote a lens about doing that. Thanks for a great lens

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Useful tips thanks for that.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks for visiting :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: That is a great tip! Thank you for sharing it :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Oh yes, the excuses... Thank you for commenting!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Spiderlily321: Thank you so much for the blessing!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @olayanjugto: Thank you so much :)

    • KerryVor profile image

      Kerry Voronoff 4 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Brilliant! I think I'll talk to my labradoodles more often. They are very good listeners :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @KerryVor: Dogs are the best listeners, aren't they? :)

    • profile image

      ChroniclesofaWa 4 years ago

      I like your tips. I find them very helpful. It is very frustrating to have a writer's block. :)

    • tobydavis profile image

      tobydavis 4 years ago

      Really like the 'Changing Medium' and 'Magnet Poetry' ideas, and I love a good Note Book! I find doing simple tasks help : like emptying the Dishwasher, doing laundry or taking the bin out. Ideas will pop into my head, plus it gets the housework done :-)

    • lbrummer profile image

      Loraine Brummer 4 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      You've given so many great suggestions to overcome writer's block. Thanks!! Blessed!!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @lbrummer: Thank you so very much! I really appreciate it!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @tobydavis: Good idea! Thank you for visiting :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @ChroniclesofaWa: I'm glad you find them helpful :)

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I like Seth Godin's tip: write like you talk. He says that no one gets "talker's block." Nice lens!

    • Aja103654 profile image

      Aja103654 4 years ago

      Thank you, I really like the walking and teddy bear tip. Cats are kind of mean LOL, they look at you then walk away.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Aja103654: I think dogs make better listeners than cats... Thank you for commenting :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: That is really an excellent idea! And true, too! Thank you so much for sharing :)

    • Babbages profile image

      Babbages 4 years ago

      Some great advice here, thanks!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Babbages: Thank you for visiting :)

    • CampingmanNW profile image

      CampingmanNW 4 years ago

      I find that writing like I think and speak is the easiest. But you have a ton of advice that is really good. thanks for a great lens.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Very interesting, well written and im sure no writers block in here;)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @CampingmanNW: You're absolutely right. I think that is the easiest as well. Thank you for visiting :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thank you very much! I am so glad you like it :)

    • kathysart profile image

      kathysart 4 years ago

      I think I am going to get some of those magnetic words on Amazon.. thanks!

    • Klaartje Loose profile image

      Klaartje Loose 4 years ago

      I have to slay my inner perfectionist on a weekly base, by reminding myself that all perfectionists have one thing in common: nothing! They accomplish nothing, because of their out-of-this-world-standards. But you covered that one already, with the inner editor I guess. Great lens!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Klaartje Loose: Thank you! And well said. I had been struggling with my inner perfectionist for a long time, until I suddenly realised I had stopped writing completely. Not because I didn't have any ideas, but because I was too afraid to get started in case it didn't turn out perfect. I'm very glad I got over that!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @kathysart: I have a set of magnetic words and I just love playing with them. I used to write a short poem and put it on my fridge each morning, just for fun. Good luck with yours!

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      Bob 4 years ago from Kansas City

      Great lens and so inspiring and helpful!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
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      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @safereview: Thank you! And thank you so much for the blessing!

    • Michael Oksa profile image

      Michael Oksa 4 years ago

      I have a theory that states a person is not a real writer until they have written an article on fighting writer's block. Congratulations! Welcome to the club. :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @Michael Oksa: Thank you for that!

    • RosaMorelli profile image

      RosaMorelli 4 years ago

      Excellent ideas to kick-start writing when the dreaded block happens. One of my favourite notebooks is the moleskine too - just opening it up in my favourite coffee house can spur me on to write :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @RosaMorelli: I know! They're just magic!

    • MJ Martin profile image

      MJ Martin aka Ruby H Rose 4 years ago from Washington State

      congrats on purple star, yippee! Great ideas to get me to stop reading stuff and get busy writing anyway, anywhere anything. I LOVE some of the motivation you shared. I so gotta get me a place for my little stuffed animals to tell me their stories. Yep, that is my favorite idea, kudos!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @MJ Martin: Thank you! I am so glad you found some inspiration here - writer's block (and procrastination) can be such a pain!

    • shellys-space profile image

      Shelly Sellers 4 years ago from Midwest U.S.A.

      I am having a good chat with my teddy bear :) I need all the writing help I can get, thanks for the information!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @shellys-space: Teddy bears are the best listeners!

    • NoYouAreNot profile image

      NoYouAreNot 4 years ago

      #7 definitely for me!

      Long, refreshing walks -- seeing different things, having the energy circulate again freely works like magic, Every.Single.Time.

    • goldenrulecomics profile image

      goldenrulecomics 4 years ago

      Lots of good advice. I never get writer's block -- I just never seem to have enough time to do all the writing I want!

    • opatoday profile image

      opatoday 4 years ago

      What an amazing lens I suffer from writer's block and this really helps thanks

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @opatoday: Glad to be of help!

    • profile image

      WickedWoman 4 years ago

      As a member of the "frequent writer's block club" I appreciate your lens. :) Nice work!

    • hntrssthmpsn profile image

      hntrssthmpsn 4 years ago

      Sometimes I feel like writer's block is just kind of my natural state ;). I did NaNoWriMo last November, and the tactic of writing out of chronological order really, really helped! Also, "No Plot, No Problem" is a WONDERFUL book! Chris Baty is really good at writing about writing, and I found the book very helpful... and did finish my 50,000 words in 30 days!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @hntrssthmpsn: Well done! I have done NaNoWriMo four times now, and that book has helped me a lot!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @WickedWoman: Ahh, you and me both! Thank you :)

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I go for a walk...have a break. Congrats on the purple. Well deserved.

    • profile image

      fifinn 4 years ago

      Thanks for the tips. Very useful. I agree that fight writer block by write anyway.. anything.

    • dwindhaus lm profile image

      dwindhaus lm 4 years ago

      Some good tips here, thank you.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @aesta1: Thank you! Yes, having a break always seems to help :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @fifinn: Yes, this is really what works best for me :)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @dwindhaus lm: Thanks for reading :)

    • rstaveley lm profile image

      Richard Staveley 4 years ago from Burley in Wharfedale, Yorkshire, England

      Great lens! I always find going for a walk most effective - only trouble is I spend all day walking and never get anything else done.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @rstaveley lm: There is always the risk of that...!

    • KamalaEmbroidery profile image

      KamalaEmbroidery 4 years ago

      Thanks for the tips - I need to get a teddy bear as writer's block is one of my worse problems. Hot baths and walking or even cleaning house work best for me.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @KamalaEmbroidery: Yes, doing something completely unrelated to writing often seem to help.

    • JeannyLeRoux profile image

      JeannyLeRoux 4 years ago

      Really a great lens! Thanks for sharing.

      SquidLove

      Jeanny

    • wildbluefrontier profile image

      Nathan M 4 years ago from Tucson

      Some good tips. i don't have a teddy bear though so I'll have to make do.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 4 years ago

      @wildbluefrontier: Maybe a potted plant?

    • renewedfaith2day profile image

      renewedfaith2day 4 years ago

      Good suggestions. What helps me is to remember that, as a lensmaster, I have no deadline. Now in other venues this is not the case. Thanks for this one.

    • JohnGcorner profile image

      JohnGcorner 3 years ago

      Taking a break, most preferably a walk. There's no point in forcing it and agonize yourself by just sitting in front of your keyboard hoping something will pop out.

    • profile image

      ColettaTeske 3 years ago

      Thank you for the great information. Very nice lens and congratulations on the Purple Star. Well earned.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @ColettaTeske: Thank you! And thank you for visiting :)

    • nicenet profile image

      nicey 3 years ago

      I got some good ideas from your lens . Thanks a lot.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @nicenet: Awesome! The best of luck to you :)

    • clevergirlname profile image

      clevergirlname 3 years ago

      I get writers block all the time but I always bounce back. Great topic!

    • joseph-sottile-16 profile image

      joseph-sottile-16 3 years ago

      I like number 6 best of all: kill your inner critic. Yes, all writers should do that!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @joseph-sottile-16: It's hard to do, but really helps!

    • SavioC profile image

      SavioC 3 years ago

      Hi. Its a very helpful lens. I am very new to writing and have heard a lot about writers block & yet to experience it. Saved this lens for a later day. Thanks for sharing this lens.

    • dancingdiva02 profile image

      dancingdiva02 3 years ago

      great lens! As well as your follow up to this! :) I always get writers block when I'm working on school papers! Most frustrating. I just sit there for hours and eventually I get a spark and just write!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @dancingdiva02: I'm glad you found it helpful!

    • Jogalog profile image

      Jogalog 3 years ago

      Great ideas. I like to jot down ideas in the notes app on my phone when they come to me.

    • darkflowers profile image

      Anja Toetenel 3 years ago from The Hague, the Netherlands

      Lovely Lens, I enjoyed it, great tips too! Especially the magnetic poetry and I might even consider talking to my Teddy bear ;-) I reached my like maximum for today so I can't hit the LIKE button, but I did like your Lens a lot!

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @darkflowers: Thank you for reading and commenting. Hitting the "likes" maximum can happen to anyone. There are just so many good lenses out there!

    • darkflowers profile image

      Anja Toetenel 3 years ago from The Hague, the Netherlands

      @darkflowers: Update: I came back to like your Lens, as today I have new likes left in my love basket ;-)

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @darkflowers: Thank you, that is really so incredibly sweet! :)

    • tammywilliams09 profile image

      tammywilliams09 3 years ago

      Thanks for the tips especially about using different mediums and word of the day

    • josietook profile image

      josietook 3 years ago

      Good tips, definitely agree with going for a walk and keeping a notepad.

    • toshia lm profile image

      toshia lm 3 years ago

      great tips... thank you for sharing

    • profile image

      boiscanot 3 years ago

      Wrintg is not primary activity here, but this lens is very inspiring! ;0)

      boiscanot

      http://www.squidoo.com/boiscanotartwork

    • HappyTom LM profile image

      Tom Christen 3 years ago from Switzerland/Ecuador

      A very nice lens, thank you very much for sharing!

    • zentao profile image

      zentao 3 years ago

      Great ideas for killing writers block. I also use Brain Tracy's, "eat the frog" ant-procrastination method, which basically says to do the hardest tasks first thing.

      When you write regardless first thing every morning, it begins to become an ingrained habit and seems very natural and easy.

    • Aibrean82 profile image
      Author

      Aibrean82 3 years ago

      @zentao: Aha! I never thought of using that tip for writing! I use it for housework, though. It's such a good idea and great help to just start with the hardest task. I will definitely try it for my writing now. Thanks for sharing!

    • profile image

      cookiebear98 3 years ago

      As I have trouble writing, I'll try some of your ideas. I enjoyed your lens. Thank you.

    • MariannesWhims profile image

      Marianne Gardner 3 years ago from Pacific NW, USA

      I like having a notebook by my bed and a small notebook in my purse. I get some of my ideas late at night when I should be sleeping, too. I relate to the tip not to do mindless browsing on the internet with writer's block. You caught me, ha ha, now--- Back to work, like you said.

    • PaigSr profile image

      PaigSr 3 years ago from State of Confussion

      Yes I always seam to have that note pad and pencil with me. I also find staring out a window seams to help. I did up my first five poll sites staring out of the same window on my lunch and breaks at work. It was a great way to think about something besides work. Of course I think a few people were staring at me as well.

      Tip: Finally I would hand out pieces of paper and have people write out ten words on them. This was originally done for my poll and quiz sites. But I did build a few other lenses as words gave me ideas in other areas.

    • Hairdresser007 profile image

      James Jordan 3 years ago from Burbank, CA

      Great tips! Thank you!

    • John Dyhouse profile image

      John Dyhouse 3 years ago from UK

      A few useful tips there, some I have tried but can never have enough ready in the background

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