Writing Prompt 1: Breaking Up with Writer’s Block

While checking out some different writing prompts on Writer’s Digest I found this awesome free guide that they off. They call it, The Writing Prompt Boot Camp. It’s a free download and you can get it here. I thought, that for my beginning of this weekly writing prompt challenge I’ve set for myself, that this guide would be a good place to start.

If you’ve been having some of the same problems as me, then I really encourage you to join me! I’d love for anyone who wants to to post their responses in the comments below.

Anyway… here’s the first one:

Breaking Up With Writer’s Block
It’s time for you and Writer’s Block to part ways. Write a letter breaking up with Writer’s
Block, starting out with, “Dear Writer’s Block, it’s not you, it’s me …”

There we go. So, you mission, whether you choose to accept it or not, is to break-up with your writer’s block. We all know that it’s an unhealthy relationship. Just pull the plug already.

So. Ready…..

Set….

Go!

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Making Time to Write

Well, I’m doing it. I’m getting back to my writing.

One piece of advice that I hear all the time from people on how to be a good writer is to write something everyday. Which doesn’t really sound all that hard now does it? Just sit down, with pen and paper, and just put some words down. It doesn’t have to be the beginnings of amazing literature. It just has to be something.

Yeah, it’s not that easy. Maybe for some people it is, but not for me. I do this thing where I psych myself out. I over think my writing all the time and don’t allow it to be crappy. I mean, no matter what, when you write something you need to allow yourself to write that shitty first draft.

I don’t do that. I put too much pressure on myself and I know it’s stupid, but I do.

Then, on top of all that, I have to make time for writing. Again, not that hard, right?

And again, for me it is. I work a full time job now, I’m married and (call me crazy) but I like to spend quality time with Husband, I have friends that I already don’t spend as much time with as I should, family, reading, blogging, and I joined a gym. By the time I get everything done in a day that I need to do, there’s not a ton of time or energy left over for writing.

I suppose that’s what self discipline is for, but even that comes in limited quantities.

So how do I go about making time to write and making sure I have energy?

I don’t know really. I’m still trying to figure it out. It would make sense to set time aside everyday for writing, but I’ve tried that before.

Really, I’m just making excuses. I’m going to try different strategies and we’ll see what happens.

My first plan is to participate in the weekly writing prompt that Writer’s Digest has on their webpage. My plan is to post the prompt (and others that I come across) at the beginning(ish) of each week, and then post what I write on it by the time I post the next prompt. We’ll see how this works. I’d love it for anyone to join me and in the comment section leave some of what they wrote in response 🙂

What about you? How to you make sure that you have time to write?

Just Keep Swimming

Sometimes I feel as if I have just shot myself in the foot.

I mean, I’ve loaded the gun. Lined it up with my foot. Pulled the trigger. And POW!

Foot has been shot.

That’s how this Harry Potter paper is making me feel. Like, I have all these ideas and plans and evidence from the texts and outside sources and a detailed outline all done. And then I sit down to write the paper and BAM! I run into a wall. I keep looking at my paper and get worried. All I see are quotes that I’ve strung together, my “original thought” sentences connecting the better phrased quotes together.

Sometimes I feel like I’ve tricked everybody into thinking I’m all brilliant and everything. Surprise! I’m not! Ugh.

But then I think: No. You can;t have fooled this many people. Not the acceptance board at my graduate school. Not my husband (who can read me like an open book). Not my parents. Not all these amazingly awesome teachers at my grad school. No. There is no way I fooled them all. So then the person I’m fooling has to be myself.

I am brilliant. I can write this damned paper. And it will be awesome.

So sitting here staring at the screen (not writing my paper), I think of some advice that author Ellen Kushner gave me this summer: Get the words on the page. Get a frist draft done. Let it be shit. Let it be a shitty first draft. Because that’s what it is: a first draft. You can’t fix nothing. If there are no words on the page – you can’t refine them. But I can refine shit. I can take a piece of coal and turn it into a diamond.

And then I think of Finding Nemo

Just insert “writing” for “swimming” and you could have my theme song.

So, what am I going to do?

I’m going to keep swimming. And so should you if you hit that awesome wall of self doubt.

Strife and Woe…

Ugh. Do you know what month it is? Other than November… I mean, that’s obvious. But apart from that. Do you know what month it is?

National Novel Writing Month.

The month where participants attempt to write an entire novel in the span of thirty days. They even have this awesome webpage for it. You can sign up and do lots of fun things. It’s pretty awesome.

Except it makes me super depressed.

I have been working on my novel for three years and I haven’t completed a frist draft. Yes, I have revamped the chapters I have done, but I haven’t been able to power through. And now I”m at this huge writer’s block. I think I might even dislike my novel.

Stupid Chapter Nine. I thought I had figured out a way to fix it but no…

This is my sulking post. I will suck it up after this one and power through. Because as Ellen Kushner said this summer, “It might be shit but at least it’s shit you’ve got on the page and can work with” (or some variant of that…)

Maybe I could just skip over Chapter Nine and work on another one… I don’t know. Creative juices aren’t flowing as much as I would like for them too. Ugh. Woe is me.

OKAY! I’m done!

NO MORE SULKING!

New goal: I will get Chapter Nine written by the end of November.
Loftier goal: I will finish my book by the end of November.

All starting tomorrow…

Writer’s Block

Dun dun DUN!

If you are a writer, you have had writer’s block. And if you haven’t…well then most other writers will hate you. Me, even with exercises for my online classes I’m taking this fall, still have writer’s block. I just can’t get through chapter nine of my novel. I know what needs to happen… I just don’t know what needs to happen next.

Ugh.

Or maybe I’m just being lazy.

Anyway, like a good member of my generation I searched the internet for answers.

One web page suggested that I turn to God to help cure my writer’s block. While interesting, I wanted something more proactive.

Here are the suggestions that I like:

  • Explore new subjects. There’s a good chance that you’ve written all you can (at this stage in your life) about one subject, so pick one closely related to it, research it, and see what happens.
  • Switch mediums. If you usually work on the computer, try pen and paper. Or vice versa.
  • Rewrite a story. No, not what you’re thinking. Take a story (or chapter of a novel or just a scene) and rewrite it from another POV (for all of you non-Englishly people this means Point Of View) try writing it from another character’s perspective. You don’t have to come up with a new plot. You have that part already. Just mix it up a bit.
  • Relocate. I think that one is pretty straight-forward…
  • Find a writing buddy. Bounce ideas off of each other. Sometimes just talking to someone who understand the whole “writing thing” helps more than you know…
  • Work on something else. Take a break from your major project and just write about something else. It doesn’t have to be a full story. Do a writing exercise. <— granted this hasn't helped me too much yet
  • Write for five minutes. Just that. Just do five minutes and then stop if you have to. Something is better than nothing.
  • Let yourself write horribly. Shitty writing is better than no writing. Just get something on the page and then rework it later. 

So there you go. Maybe next time I’ll post something that I have actually written!
That would be nice…

(Links I found my suggestions on: 36 ways to cure writer’s block and 20 Surefire ways to beat writer’s block)