Writing Exercises to Remove Writers Block

>> Friday, July 22, 2011

Wendy Bailey is my guest today. A freelance writer and blogger, Wendy contributes to a number of sites, and today shares some ways to defeat writers block.

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There are times when you might need writing exercises to remove writers block. When this happens it can be very upsetting. If the person writes professionally, it can be very devastating. Fortunately there are ways to eliminate this block with a few simple steps.

Writing Exercises

• These help the writer to get the creative flow back into their life.
• It helps to remove the panic that can happen when a person has an emotional crisis.
• These will also ad to your ability to write more creatively and prolifically.

Free Writing
Begin writing on a subject that you love. Write freely and openly. Sometimes this can be very liberating and get the flow of the art going forward. This can be a wonderful way to begin every day. Even on the days that you do not have writers block, this can be a wonderful way to begin the flow of creativity.

Automatic Writing
Pick a subject. Then set a timer. Begin writing and do not stop until the timer goes off. When you do not know what to write, then you simply write that. The point of the thing is to keep going. No matter how hard it is, never stop writing.

Take a set of keywords and write a story based on those keywords. Like the previous exercise, set a time limit or length. Do not stop until that length or time period is reached. It is a wonderful way to the creative juices flowing and kick the writers’ block.

Yoga Exercise
Find a secluded place and site quietly. Place your hands on your lap and close your eyes. Take a few cleansing breathes through your nose. Then breathe out. Focus on your breath for a few minutes. Then you can begin to write because you are able to release some of the stress that can happen.

Take words that are scrambled and try to unscramble them. You can get them from many places. Sometimes the newspaper has this sort of thing available. It helps with the concentration factor and focus on the letters. Think of I as going from small to big. You are focusing on something so small and concentrating so hard that it is easy to branch out from there.

Good old-fashioned journaling can get the juices flowing for a writer. Just the simple process of writing on a daily basis for expression can help as a writing exercise. It helps get the flow of your pen moving forward so you can write.

This has a similar effect as journaling. Take any subject that catches your fancy and run with it. You will be amazed at how easy it will flow. Make it a daily blog. Soon, you will wonder how you lived without blogging.

The last one is perfect for any freelancer. Take one project and write on it a while. Add to it and mix it up. Soon your creative juices will begin to flow like never before. Then switch to another subject. This becomes a game. Then when you go back to the writing you will find that you are far more creative than ever before.

Writing exercises like these can really help remove the writers’ block that gets in the way. Every writer will experience this from time to time. It is very important to not let that interfere in the creative process. Once you begin some of these exercises, you will find that your blocks come far less.

Share your experiences with us -- how do you beat writers block?


Alexa 9:53 AM  

These are all GREAT ideas! I have been known to use free writing myself. If I were a full-time writer, I would free-write for a set amount of time every day.

BUT, my number one way of defeating my writer's block is to read. When I have a serious bout of writer's block, I tell myself that I will read 2, 3 books and I MUST finish them before I pick up my own pen (or open my own document) again. If I get spurts of inspiration for my own story, I allow myself to jot down notes, but I do not write until I'm done reading. It always works.

Christa C 1:23 PM  

Thanks for the excellent tips! I usually go for a walk to try and clear some of the clutter out of my brain. Another thing that works for me is going somewhere different to write, like the local coffee shop or even the college nearby. I think the change awakens my senses and jump starts my creativity.

Pamala Knight 1:57 PM  

Thanks for the excellent tips. Like others, I find reading and sometimes just writing down the words that say I'm stuck, to be helpful.

Diana 12:24 AM  

Thank you for this terrific advice! I am currently having a break from writing, having written two novels in three years, published them and quite a few article and short stories. I am at Ch 6 of my next and just couldn't keep going. The more I force myself, the worse it gets. I have decided to be kind to myself (not TOO kind though) and these tips are very welcome. Thank you thank you thank you!!!

Gloria 4:21 AM  

Wonderful tips, Wendy!

Waving "Hi" to Joan--fellow Margie Lawson IMC alum, and writer extraordinaire. Sigh. I'd trade my Crest 3D Whitened eyeteeth to be back at the lodge in the Rockies. Any takers? Cavity free.

Several tips rang oh-so-true.

Just write: Writing buddy and CP, Sherry Isaac, and I chat in the mornings. It was hard to "hang up" and get to work until we started write-a-thons. We (eventually) realize we have work to do and set a timer for 45 or 60 minutes, then write until the timer dings. EEE! Recess time! We chat about progress and repeat.

Write past it: I named my inner editor. Gracie is the writer in me who can turn a word or sentence or paragraph into a career. I now leave notes for her in the ms. "GRACIE: Need some snarky dialog here." I can then go on and come back to it when I have (for this example) a snark attack.

CODE 1311: Karen Weisner of First Draft in Thirty Days fame has a list for getting past writer's block. Page 13, Item 11 is "take a nap." Or, is it Page 11, Item 13? Either way...the power nap works. But, FDITD is SO not Gracie.

Love your blog guests, Joan. I have been lurking.

Gloria Richard (and, Gracie)

Robin Kaye 7:53 AM  

Hi Joan and Wendy~

I have a book called The Writer's Block by Jason Rekulak 786 Ideas to Jump-start Your Imagination and I usually just open it up to whatever page and write what it says to write, for instance: "Write a story that begins, 'Three days passed before they found the body.'" Or a spark word - Bird with a photo of a hand holding up the middle finger- you're supposed to write a sentence, a paragraph, a story whatever... about what that word and picture sparked in your imagination. This book is a treasure and it has worked every time so far. Thank God.

Tressa 5:03 PM  

Excellent tips! Bookmarking this.

Anonymous,  9:06 PM  

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