So I want to be a writer.... How do I start?
Writing seems easy enough; I should just start. Yet when I sit down to type, my mind goes blank and I’m not sure what to say. There’s a mental roadblock in my way. Sound familiar?!
I find it can be hard for people to speak out and share their stories. Instead of searching online and googling, “coping with writer’s block,” I’m going to share my experience.
Ever felt this way: you try to start something, but you just can’t? Some tasks can seem overwhelming. You may not know where to start; so instead of starting, you don’t.
You feel stuck!
I have had this happen to me a couple times before, when I was starting to write large papers for some courses I took. However, I have never experienced such a large mental roadblock until recently. When I went to start writing my book, I had all these ideas running through my head; but when I went to type them out recently, I couldn’t.
I know from past experience that you don’t make any progress by doing nothing. So I decided to try to overcome my writer’s block and found some successful ways to do that. The small changes I made and the strategies I learned (which I have shared below) made a world of difference!
TRUST ME: KEEP MOVING FORWARD!!!!
I guess I got anxious/overwhelmed with the thought of writing an entire book.
It can be a daunting task if you look at it from a certain perspective.
Here are 8 strategies that have helped me overcome my writer’s block:
1) Just write. You are doing something, so that is progress. You may write the ending first, but just get something down on paper. Fill the page. That way, at least you will have something to edit. I bring a notebook everywhere I go, in case inspiration strikes.
2) Break the project down into smaller manageable tasks, and set a realistic schedule to do each one.
3) Change sceneries and/or the time of day. If you feel it’s daunting staring at a blank page, take a notebook and go outside. That has helped me. Here are some pictures of the places where I have been motivated to write.
4) Instead of typing out your thoughts, speak them out and record them. Perhaps a voice-to-text translator will help.
5) Surround yourself with positive people. When you are doing such an intense mental task, your social environment can influence you tremendously. Negative people around you may make you feel insecure, which can create a mental block.
6) Don’t listen to critics. If you do get some negative feedback, let that motivate you to create a masterpiece.
7) Believe in yourself and your talents. You have a lot to say. There may be times when you will doubt yourself. Sometimes, you just have to fake the belief in yourself and keep going until you realize that it is true.
8) Don’t lose sight of your vision and you original purpose for writing your book. I have my book’s purpose taped to the wall behind my desk so I can be reminded of it while I’m writing.
These are the strategies that worked for me. I’d love to hear more from my fellow writers or from others who have approached a huge undertaking and overcame the roadblocks along the way.
How do you overcome roadblocks when writing or taking on a similarly-challenging task? How do you persevere?
Thank you for reading and your presence at this beach retreat. You Rock! I'm looking forward to hearing your thoughts in the comment section below.
See you at the beach!