Monday, June 11, 2018

Keys to Breaking the Block

You're writing, writing, writing, then...


BAM! Writer's block. Why are my characters here? Where are they going? And how do they get there?

Fear not! Writer's Block is all in your head - and so are the answers to each of the above questions. Instead of forcing them out, try these easy steps to clear your mind...

from yarn
Then, when it's prodigiously empty enough, the words will flow again!

Breaking the Block:
  1. Take a walk
  2. Have a snack
  3. Phone a friend
  4. Read
  5. Watch a movie
  6. Take a nap
  7. Work on something else
  8. Clean or organize
  9. Play a game
  10. Draw or doodle
There are so many distractions that can take your mind off your Block. It's like when a couple is trying so hard to have a baby, then they give up, maybe even adopt one, and Bang! Preggers! (I have several friends who've had this happen) It's because the stress is gone. Relax, stop worrying, and good things will come.

Please note I didn't say get on social media. I never recommend it for inspiration. Social media is like a narcotic painkiller - it's okay in small doses, but use it too much and it's addictive leading to abuse.

Now back to our Blockage. If you've tried a few of these things and you're still stuck on how to proceed, here are some methods for figuring out your characters' next moves...
  • First, how far are they from the goal? Do they need to overcome more obstacles? Have you tortured them enough? If not, go to extremes. What's the worst that could happen? You will either argue with yourself or you'll use it.
  • Next, ask some random questions, like: What's going on around them? Do they need to lose or find something to move on? How do they feel? Are emotions getting in the way? Do they need a surprise or shock?
  • And lastly, ask yourself: What would you do if you were with them? Would you be snarky? or helpful? or tricky? or encouraging? or what?
Questions, What Ifs, Trial and Error - those are a Writer's Block's worst enemy. Ask enough questions and you'll be back into your story in no time!

~ + ~ + ~ + ~

Now for this week's shout out...

Diane is insanely talented and hard-working! She conducts seminars on promotion, leadership and goal setting. With loads of experience and credentials, she travels the East Coast for interviews and speaking engagements, maintains several websites & blogs, offers book formatting consultation, and does sessions for schools.

Her latest guidebook is How to Publish and Promote Your Book Now! She also recently published an an inspirational self-help book Overcoming Obstacles With SPUNK! The Keys to Leadership & Goal-Setting with seven other authors which features the five keys to success.

“With a positive attitude, any goal can be achieved!” 
- L. Diane Wolfe, Owner of Dancing Lemur Press and Freedom Fox Press

~ + ~ + ~ + ~

Before you go--I have to tell you about these 2 GIVEAWAYS!

To celebrate my just-signed contract for Beast World #3 - WINDY HOLLOW, I set up a Giveaway on Amazon for 2 winners to receive paperback copies of #2, CRADLE ROCK. But naturally, that was over in less than an hour. I don't know how that happens!

So, since I haven't done a Rafflecopter in a long while, I thought I'd do one of those too. This one has loads of prizes and will be open for a month.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Or if you'd like to review it, I'd be happy to send you a free e-copy. Just ask!)

Thanks for stopping by!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'd rather not argue with myself. I never win.
Great choice for your shout-out this week!
And big congratulations on signing the contract.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Congrats on Windy Hollow.

Thank you for featuring me today.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tara - great post about getting back into the groove. Congratulations on your book, and good to see Diane promoted: she does amazing stuff for us bloggers as well - cheers Hilary

The Silver Fox said...

You're so right that distractions can solve the problem. You list the pregnancy example. Have you ever been looking all over for something, and then just give up, only to stumble across wherever you'd left it a few minutes later? It's kinda like that, innit?

Patricia Lynne said...

I do find stepping away really helps me. I get my mind off of it and often find the answer comes to me when I'm not thinking about it.

Heather R. Holden said...

Hurray for Windy Hollow! That's awesome!

And totally agree about distractions helping with writer's block. I always try to clear my head like that whenever I'm beyond frustrated with one of my projects!

Christine Rains said...

Congratulations! That's awesome. :) Distractions always help me with writer's block. I get a lot of cleaning done in those times.