Many of us experience creative slumps, but I do believe that there are steps we can take to invite the muse back into our writing lives. Here are just a few remedies that have helped me in the past:
- Brainstorm with a friend, or alone if you prefer. This is especially effective if you are writing fiction and the story line has come grinding to a halt. If you participate in an on-line community, you may discover inspiration with the help of one of your blogging buddies.
- Switch genres. Move outside your comfort zone and write a brief poem, short story or an article…whichever you don’t write on an ordinary basis.
- Go back to a piece of writing that you previously abandoned and revise/edit/resuscitate.,
- Take a break. Go for a walk in nature, browse a museum or art gallery, a thrift store or garage sale. You will find a wealth of subject matter to explore.
- Choose random words from a dictionary or book and use them as in a paragraph, poem or flash fiction. Allow your subconscious to do the choosing. You will be surprised to find that a theme often emerges.
- Put your manuscript aside and take a break from writing for a day or two, or longer. But set a deadline to return.
- If you write poetry, try a form that is new to you, or free verse if you usually write form poetry.
- Maintain a daily writing journal and every evening jot down a few details of things you’ve observed, tidbits of conversations you’ve had or overheard, events that took place. When you’re stuck, go digging in your collected musings for something that ignites a spark.
- Keep a file of work that you’ve edited out of previous manuscript or poems. Go back, select one and use it as a launch pad for an entirely new project.
I hope you find something in this to jump-start your writing if and when it stalls. Would you do me a favor? If you have suggestions or technique that help you, would you share it in comments?
Thank you as always for visiting my blog.
Great advice and I enjoyed browsing through your work. It is wonderful.
Good advice! Thank you!!
all the suggestions are priceless. this post (wordsmith wednesday) is a treasure.
Thanks, everyone, for your comments and suggestions. I’m away right now and will try to return visits next week!
Any short break usually works for me. My big mutt is always ready to walk or play ball.
I have tried several of these suggestions and they do help. You always share such helpful information, Victoria–thank you.
Just reading your fab interview on JP. Love the story of sketch of mom shaving legs. Isn’t that quintessentially “us?”
Anway, the reason you can get InLinkz set up on WordPress is WordPress. They really don’t go together. It’s not operator error.
Have a great evening. Pet the kids for me! LOL! 🙂
Thanks, Jamie, for the feedback on InLinkz.
Maybe i’m just weird but for me inspiration never dries up.
Just sometimes the motivation to start gets me.
I find that (as odd as this will sound) a slightly arrogant attitude and approach to your art can really help.
Most people i talk to about creative block etc are usually those who have the idea but a daunted at how to make it a reality
Taking a break — that one usually works best for me. A complete change of scene for a while can get the juices flowing.
Wonderful list, Victoria! The random word one sounds fun, let your brain and heart go walking where they will. 🙂
P.S.: I do like your new theme. It sets things off nicely. We used it too for THE CAT’S MEOW, but see here it works well for a posts by humans too! LOL!
Well done …
Hugs! Hope you guys are staying warm and dry. We are expecting a deluge today.
All good advice, Victoria. Write on target. Thanks! 🙂
Informative post! Thanks for sharing
these really are some cool recommendations…i have tried several of these…and a few i may need to try again soon…
Thank you for the recommendations …
The Celebrate Poet of Spring 2011 Awards: Awesome and well deserved! ~becca~
Wonderful suggestions .. I should soon begin a diary 🙂
Your suggestions are excellent. I take time to dwell on other matters having nothing to do with writing. When I get back to writing again, the words begin to flow. Usually… Blessings to you…