Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Evil in a Writer's Life

Is called Writer’s Block.

That’s when you sit at the computer and realize you can’t finish a sentence. You might even forget your hero and/or heroine’s name. And if it’s really bad, you’re asking yourself what your own name is.

Everyone has their own way of handling writer’s block. Some doggedly sit at the computer, struggling to come up with the next word or sentence. Others get away, looking for something, anything, to help jumpstart their imagination.

My imagination tends to go on vacation when I’m tired. Or for the days I could write non-stop, write all night and still be alert the next day.

So what do I do when that happens?

Cleaning the three bathrooms comes to mind. But I prefer driving up into the hills or around the vineyards or ranches and let my characters talk to me. They do love their road trips.

Sometimes opt for a long bath and a book to let my brain relax enough to return to work.

Personally, I don’t sit at the computer and try to push through. My writing isn’t as effective then.

So what do you do when your imagination decides to take off?



  1. Timely post for me, Linda.

    I'm going through that right now. I think it's because I'm not sure where exactly I want the story to go. That's definitely one of the problems with being a pantser. I tried sitting there and forcing myself to write something, anything. But all that accomplished was negative thinking.

    My new strategy? Step away. I plan to brave the cold and have a snow ball fight with my children and then relax on the couch with a good book. Hopefully my characters will start whispering any time now.

  2. This pantser always steps away, Elle. It's just easier on the nerves.

    And you can come up with even better stuff that way too.

  3. I am a panster also. And I think you both are right....step away from it and let your mind wander and then ideas will start to creep into your head.

    I love the idea of going for a drive or even the snowball fight to allow your mind to be at ease and let the creativeness flow.

    Good luck to you both!

  4. Yes, you do something different and it's as if your brain shifts into a different gear. Things used to come to me at the movies. I started carrying a lighted pen with me and always had a notebook before. Lighted pen meant I could see what I wrote.