What do you do when you hit a writing block?

Well actually, I haven’t run into a writing block, I have simply not been writing during the effort to write a novel during the month of November. For this article, let’s pretend that I am sharing the problems of not knowing what to write.

First you must find a trigger. It could be something as simple as standing up and looking out the window. Who knows what you will see. It could be your character walking past, or the exact weather you need to describe. Get up and have something to eat. Maybe the people in your story need to eat as well.

If that does not work, perhaps you need a longer break. Take a walk, go shopping or go see a movie. I would suggest avoiding TV or surfing the web as these activities really chew up valuable time, while a movie or walk have definite ending points.

If you are still stuck, try a different writing event. Throw together a quick blog of anything you are working on. If you don’t have anywhere else to post, paste it as a response to my posting.

There is always a topic that you like to talk about, convert that into writing, just to keep the words coming. Eventually, you will drift back to the story that you want to finish.

I still recommend establishing deadlines for yourself, both to keep yourself honest and to drive towards completion. You can use events line National Novel Writing Month, or a short story completion. You may want to make a holiday or birthday as the deadline, especially if you want you story to be a present to a friend or family member. All that we write provides insight and entertainment. Keep writing even if you do not want so show anyone else your work.


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Martin writes about writing in his weekly column Ramblings from Martin.

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