First, an update… NaNoWriMo was a smashing success. I managed to complete my 50,000 word story in the first 15 days, leaving me the rest of the month to work on my “serious” WIP.
I’ve been dealing with some kind of creative block lately. I’ve hardly written at all since I typed “The End” at the end of my HORRIBLE NaNovel, a zombie story that was confused, to be kind. So, I decided to write myself an email to remind me of a few things. As I was writing it, I realized, hey, this would make a great blog post!
So, here they are. The things I wanted to remind myself. Some of the things I got from other sources and posted about them before. Others I came up with RIGHT NOW.
Perhaps one or more of these things will help you, too!
1. Self-Validate. You don’t need external validation. Whenever you want to ask someone what they think would work better, don’t. Look inside yourself and give yourself the answer you want. If all else fails, roll a dice or have Belle pick. You’ll find the way. This goes for: character back story, plot events, story backstory, historical back story. Anything story related. When the wrong option is chosen, you’ll know. You’ll know it in your heart.
2. Don’t blame [Blank]. The software in which you write does not help or hinder. Don’t blame your supposed block on the software. Don’t blame your block on anything but your own fear of success or failure. Don’t blame it on time constraints or lack of motivation or lack of creativity. You have the power to move forward no matter what the obstacle. Just sit your butt down, and write through it!
3. Write through it. You can do that, remember? You’ve done it before and it worked. So, do it again!
4. Believe in yourself. Recall those days when you believed your first drafts were gold and you didn’t care who read them because you believed in them and thought they were brilliant? Remember that when you write your first draft. Forget about the inconsistencies while you write. You’ll catch them in the redo. Don’t worry about filter words. You’ll make them into shiny brilliant passages in the redo.
5. Permission to suck. Remember that? You have permission to suck. No one but you will see this piece of shit you call your first draft. So suck it up, sucker. Just write like no one’s watching.
6. Write the first draft for yourself. The first draft is for you. Nobody else. Just you. So, like I said in #5, write like no one’s watching.
7. The first draft is for creativity. So throw up your creative juices all over those pages. Go way over the top! Go purple! Go excessive description! Go pages and pages of introspection. Go outlandish reactions. Break all of the rules! You can fix them in the redo.
8. Research later. The crime scenes can be investigated for reals after you write The End.
9. Get out of your own way. Let your muse take the wheel if you find you’re beating a dead horse. And for Pete’s sake, stop going back and reading from the beginning to the current place or you’ll NEVER reach the end. You’ll blow your whole lunch hour on reading instead of writing. Keep. Moving. Forward.
10. GO WRITE!
How do you get out of a creative block?
Keep writing, my friends! Happy Holidays!
Claire L. Fishback