I’m saying this as if I’m an expert, but trust me, I’m not.
I’m still very much lost and I struggle with ‘writer’s block’ all the freaking time, as you can see from a sporadic schedule and huge gaps in timeline of my writing and blogging over the years.
But I’ve been writing for as long as I could remember – as a kid, publishing my own internal newsletters and creating stories as we draw and play games; as a teenager, writing short stories and sending them to local tabloids and magazines, and of course throughout my adult life – aspiring to be a journalist one day and writing as much as I could to expand my portfolio.
But there are times when we just get stuck in a rut and no matter how long you sit, trying to write something, you just don’t know what to do.
So here are just some of the things that I force myself to do just to try getting something out of this weird little bubble..
Try and write about anything and everything.
Even when it sounds stupid, and even when you don’t think anybody would want to read them. Sometimes, you just gotta get out of the rut and write something. You don’t have to publish them – you can just keep it for your own archive. But the fact that you’ve written a complete piece – counts for something.
Recall your past experience
“Isn’t everything autobiographical?”
Just like what Jesse said in Before Sunset, when he was answering a question on his book signing at the beginning of the movie.
The only person who could share about what you have gone through – is you. So don’t be afraid to go back and recall your past experience – whether it’s something funny, memorable, sad, heartbreaking, or even random moments that you wouldn’t think important.
And usually, when you start to relieve your past experience, you can go to the next point..
Learn something new
As you write and relive your experiences, sometimes you would find yourself discovering a lesson that you didn’t think of before – and isn’t that amazing? To me, writing it down on paper helps with giving me clarity and better perspective on things. I can stop myself in between – and ponder on things, before I learn something new that I could then, add on to my story.
Read more books, and watch more shows
Of course, if you never expose yourself to anything new, you would never experience anything new either. And you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your couch to experience something new. Write about the book you just read, or the show you just saw. While at it, you could also share about how those stories relate to you personally, or how that makes you feel. And that is something original!
Get yourself in a new environment
Sometimes, it’s good to take yourself out and go to another place that is different. I remember loving going to the library when I was still in school. Not to just study for exams or do my assignments, but just to sit there and write, or read a book. The quiet, peaceful environment, surrounded by the smell of books just does something, doesn’t it?
Do you have more tips? Do share them with me too, I’d love to know!