Overcoming Writer’s Block


Writing (Photo credit: jjpacres)

Easy reading is damn hard writing. ~Nathaniel Hawthorne

As any writer can tell you, writer’s block is a serious problem when you have a deadline. Any author who is honest with himself will also tell you that writer’s block is sometimes just a lack of focus. It’s not always easy to write, especially if you would rather be out enjoying the sunshine, or doing just about anything but writing. The trick is to stop focusing on what you want to do, and focus instead, on what you have to do. There are many things that you can do to improve your focus, but here are a few that I sometimes use.

Remove visual distractions such as the television, if you don’t like complete silence turn on some music, that way you won’t be trying to pay attention to what’s on TV instead of writing. Music can also help you relax, which in turn, will allow you to focus on the job at hand.

Like many things, the hardest part of writing is getting started. Just write one sentence on your topic, sometimes this will start the ball rolling. Even if it’s not a good sentence, your mind will usually look at it and start thinking of ways you can make it better. Once you’ve started, the mind will usually keep going, with or without you.

Sometimes it can be helpful to write as if you were talking to a friend about your topic. Whether you are writing directions, telling a story, or providing information on some topic, write it the same way that you would say it to a person. This will at least give you the bulk or your content, and you can go back and edit it to fit your needs, once you’re done.

There is no fool-proof way to make yourself focus, but just relaxing a bit can often help you start writing, and once you’ve started, you’ve already overcome the highest hurdle.