What is Writer’s Block?
Writer’s block is that creative freeze moment when your brain goes point blank for a moment and you struggle for ideas on what to write. My previous blog post on how to overcome creative block explains this more in an elaborate manner.
Even the greatest of authors experience this at some point in their writing journey. Yeah! They all do. No one is immune to writer’s block.
What I will share here with you is how to equip yourself, such that when next this inevitable blank moment strikes, you won’t be lost and stranded. You would know exactly how to tackle it.
Let’s look at the possible causes of writer’s block. You know a solution to a problem starts with a definition of the problem. A patient is half healed after a successful diagnosis. The major problem faced is not being able to understand the root cause of a problem. Once a root cause is figured out, then a solution to resolution wouldn’t be far-fetched.
Possible Causes of Writer’s Block
1. Imposter Syndrome:
The moment you permit self-doubt to engulf you, you will surely lose focus on what to write. Erase every form of self-doubt and believe in your abilities. If anyone can do it, who else if not you?
2. Poor Authority on the Subject Matter:
Having zero knowledge of a topic you are tasked to write on can predispose you to experience writer’s block. I for one encounter this when I have an unfamiliar topic to create content on.
3. Lack of Resources:
One thing is to have poor authority on the subject matter, and another is to lack resources. You know you can have zero ideas on a topic, but have resources made available to you to read through and develop content.
Yes, it’s the 21st century, and resources seem to be everywhere on the internet. But surfing the internet on its own is a skill set not possessed by all. So for a person who has no authority in a certain field, and lacks the digital skills to surf for the right keywords and required resources, there would be no escape from writer’s block.
4. Lack of Interest:
If a topic is uninteresting to you, you most likely will battle with blocks in an effort to come up with good content. Writing is not just about passion when you have to narrow it down to an unfamiliar and strictly formal niche with so many limiting rules. When you write on a topic within your interest, ideas flow more and you tend to experience little or no blocks because you are self-sufficient with ideas and experiences to write on.
When your brain is stressed and in need of rest, but you keep stretching it beyond its elastic limit, you are in for some blank drama, lol!
There is a popular saying that a hungry man is an angry man. The same is applicable to your body which supplies nutrients to your brain. Why is breakfast said to be the most important meal of the day? Because the brain needs a supply of insulin after a long fast over the night, so the name – ‘breakfast’. The brain requires a supply of nutrients to function better at its fullest capacity. A hungry man is prone to writer’s block.
When you are anxious, your creative level would be low. Content ideas flow best when your mind is at ease. Free your mind from any form of tension before you start writing.
Trying to be who you are not in grammar by forcing big fanciful words, can limit the flow of ideas and land you in a block. It’s better to be as simple as possible.
9. Lack of a Writing Plan:
When you have a writing plan, this would guide you to prepare ahead for your writing, so you don’t end up stranded. When you have no writing plans, you most likely might find yourself in an unprepared state to develop good and readable content.
Sometimes the blank just happens and you can’t explain it.
Ways to Overcome Writer’s Block
Now that we have gained a good understanding of what writer’s block is and its possible causes, let’s see ways to overcome it. I bet from the explanations of the causes, you can already have some remedies yourself.
Nevertheless, I won’t leave you all by yourself. Here are ways I recommend based on experience to overcome writer’s block;
1. Pause and Get Some Rest:
Excuse yourself to get some fresh air. Take a stroll, take a shower, and if possible take a nap, later return to your writing to do better.
2. Tap into Your Creativity:
Explore your mind when a block hits, and apply your creative abilities. Try writing it in a reverse direction. Improve your imaginative skill
3. Make Hay While the Sun Shines:
Prepare yourself ahead of your writing, and make plans for even unforeseen writing opportunities that may come. Read lots of books, including content you can find on the internet. If you have made the decision to venture into writing, you should add reading to your hobbies.
4. Be Versatile:
This would help you to be able to talk and write about any topic irrespective of the niche. Develop yourself.
5. Make Research:
Ensure to research very well on a subject matter before launching into it to write. Have a good understanding of what you intend to write about.
6. Be Intentionally Spontaneous:
Know what you intend to achieve with your writing. The reason would guide you. It is said that the end determines the means.
7. Don’t Proofread While Writing:
This is one of the mistakes most beginner writers make that lands them in a block. Don’t proofread your work while writing. Permit the ideas to flow, write them all down as raw as they come, then return to them much later to proofread. Pausing to read halts the flow of ideas.
8. Have Enough Scheduled Recreational Time -’ Self-Love’:
Care for yourself. Hang out with friends. Create a ‘me-time’ to give yourself a good treat. This helps you to be at ease and in your best creative state. Take a lot of rest – as a content creator, and content writer, one of your greatest enemies is lack of rest. This really reduces your creative ability.
9. Make Use of Writing Prompts:
Use writing prompts to guide your writing. When nothing comes to mind, a writing prompt can gear you in a direction, right or wrong. Just get started first.
10. Free Write:
When nothing comes to mind, apply freewriting. Just type away or write away on whatever comes to mind. Even if you tend to rewrite it all over, the secret is just to start writing or typing it. The rest of the ideas would eventually start flowing. Afterward, return to revise and make edits.
11. Kill Off Imposter Syndrome
When fear and self-doubt start creeping in, kill it off. Believe in your abilities and kick on.
12. Hone Your Writing Skill
Work on yourself and hone your writing skills. A good command of writing will aid you to overcome writer’s block.
13. Work in an Environment that Spurs Your Creativity
Find an environment that spurs your creativity. Environmental factors can cause writer’s block.
14. Plan Ahead
Have a content calendar to save you from a lack of topics and posts, and a writing calendar to inspire you to write more often.
15. Keep It Simple
Keep the lines running in simple grammar. Forcing yourself to use big fanciful words can send your brain to the blank phase.
16. Defy Norms
Try it your way. You need to defy norms most times to achieve greater things.
17. Eat Well
Don’t work on an empty stomach. Ensure you are well-fed before you venture into writing.
Knowing that writer’s block is a natural experience helps you relax and know that you are not experiencing an odd event.
I hope you got answers to your search intent. Which of the listed ways to overcome writer’s block do you intend to experiment with? Kindly share in the comment box below.