It can certainly feel like we are plunging into an abyss when our words, for whatever reason abandon us. They may disappear for a moment or for longer but take heart in knowing they will return – much like a whisper across our minds that we grasp with all our might and put ink to page or screen. There can be a multitude of reasons why they elude us – work or family commitments, physical restrictions, geographical changes. Whatever they are there are opportunities to find moments for writing. A long soak in a bath with a notepad beside you, waiting in an airport lounge, riding a bus or train – use that time to jot down what you see, feel and smell. These nuggets can be useful in the future.
When your muse finally returned, what was it’s greeting? Did you stumble upon a character’s motivation? A storyline took another route? That scene you were struggling with finally came into being?
I try a word or picture prompt that is totally unrelated to my current work and the switch in thinking has a magic effect. The struggle ceases and my creativity takes over rejoicing in its freedom once again. I compare it to a re-boot of a computer – clearing the old data and making space for new thoughts. When I finish this breakaway task I find my fresh perspective makes all the difference to my current work in progress.
Why not try a prompt – there are many sites on the web to choose from, but one of my favorites is www.wfscsherwoodpark.com.
How to you overcome writer’s block? Care to share?