When I recently began writing fiction again, it was rough at first. I didn’t know what to write or how to begin. I didn’t know if I should think of a plot or setting before I got started. A lot of people, longtime writer’s or just beginning, find themselves struggling with writer’s block. Here I’ve highlighted five tips to cure, yes cure, writer’s block.
Try “Freewriting”– Set a clock for 5-10 minutes and start writing. If you cannot think of something to write, write “I don’t know what to write” until you start getting ideas. Do not think in your head about what you are going to write, just let the words flow onto the paper. Write full sentences and don’t worry about spelling, grammar, punctuation etc. just write without rules.
Listen to music as you write – There are many ways you can involve music you are listening to with what you wrote. Try listening to the lyrics and write about someone who identifies with the lyrics. Write about why they feel that way and how long they have felt that way. Soon you’ll find yourself writing a entire back story which will lead to character development and a story. You could also listen to the music and imagine you’re watching a movie. Does the music sounds romantic, happy, something you could dance to? Think about what mood it gives off and imagine what scene would be perfect for the song and describe what would happen in this scene.
Pick a career, any career and write – Think about all the different jobs/careers there are. Fast food worker, retail associate, psychologist, waitress, dentist, lawyer, anything you can think of. Imagine a person doing this for a living, write their age, why they got started doing this, if they care to go into a different field or get a different job and what they want to do with the rest of their lives. Are they happy? Soon you will again form a character and with characters come stories.
Think about your (or a friend’s) life – Think about a situation you or them are currently dealing with or have previously dealt with. Imagine how you or someone else would deal with it and what would follow. Start writing in third person (she or he), describe the situation, and then talk about how this character feels about it, go in depth with as many details as you can and shortly you will have plenty of ideas.
People watch – When you are out in public at the mall, grocery store, or restaurant (a great place to do this) pay attention to what’s going on around you. The best person to do this with is someone who is watching a game at a sports bar or a waitress/bartender. The people will be busy enough so that they will not catch you watching them and it won’t be awkward. Watch how they interact, what they’re saying and what they look like. Write about your observations about this person later and turn them into a character with a story.