According to Neil Gaiman, writer’s block is a phenomenon experienced by writers. It is best described as the feeling of being stuck in the process of writing feeling unable to move forward and write anything new.
It is a totally normal experience, but at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I did not know that.
Writer’s block happened to me for the first time when I was writing my novella.
One day, my creativity just dried up.
I tried to write… I tried and I tried, but nothing came out. Even the ideas were not really convincing.
Writing was never an easy production for me, not even under the best of circumstances. It was even harder during the lockdown.
I stopped writing for a very long while, about three months.
I felt lost and thought that there was something wrong with me. Then I learned from my mom and The Word Count that this feeling was called writer’s block.
I had heard of it before, of course, but I did not realize that it was such a crazy feeling.
I eventually learned that one the greatest writers, Lotfi El Manfalouti, suffered from a similar case. After being absent from the writing world for years, he came back to write his best works (I read most of them; they are super great).
So I figured, maybe I just needed a little break.
So while I was going through my phase of writer’s block I got hooked on The Originals tv show.
It was a very good break for me, and I even learned new words, expressions, and quotes that I used to help get my creative hand moving again.
I tried A LOT of things to get myself out of this writing funk. I made a list of everything that I tried to share them with you in the hopes that it might help you get through writer’s block too.
Take a deep breath.
Remember that writer’s block is just an annoying phase.
It will pass.
Take a break.
Try to do something else (preferably something that you enjoy doing).
Going to work does not count as a break!
Try to start a new piece of writing (short stories, articles, letters, poems, etc.).
Sometimes just getting your mind off of your work-in-progress can do wonders.
Just because you are stumped with one project, doesn’t mean that you have the lost the ability to write in general.
You can take a break from your main piece, while also keeping your writing skills sharp.
Take a longer break!
If taking a break from your work-in-progress alone does not help, and you find yourself struggling to write in other areas too, this might be a sign that your brain needs a longer break.
Try leaving writing for a days or weeks.
You will come back with a fresh eye.
Give yourself permission to breath and relax.
Remember: great things always take time.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. You don’t need to create a masterpiece right away (that’s what we have editors for!).
Try to start a new creative project such as beginning a YouTube channel or launching a podcast.
This will still allow you to be creative without forcing you down the “writing tunnel.”
Try to attend a virtual conference or try a brand new activity.
We write from our experiences, so try creating new experiences for yourself!
Read different sorts of books that will help your imaginative mind.
Pick up yor pen again!
But with fewer stakes.
Try freewriting (writing without worrying about grammar, spelling, plot, etc.) Write without a second thought.
Try getting back to that original project.
By now, you’ll have tried new ventures, read different books, and gathered more experiences.