Monday, October 26, 2015

nAmping up for November - No such thing as Writers Block!

This is my fourth NaNoWriMo. I started with a win in 2012. I bombed in 2013, but I was back on my game in 2014. Now I am ready for 2015. I put the finishing touches on an 11 page plot outline this morning. I have a good story planned out and I know I can pump out 50K words in November or even more. I am pumped, I am ready to go. Are you?

Don't let all my plotting and planning scare you off. In 2012 I joined at the last minute and had nothing but a fading dream as inspiration. That turned into my almost 60K story Little Lacey which is enjoying a modest success on Wattpad and soon to be published for reals. To hit 50K words you don't need to plot at all. Just write the words--there are always at least 50K available in my brain any given month. I am only plotting this time around to avoid 3 years of editing to get a finished product.

For those who who doubt that 50K words will be available in your brain in the month of November, I say pish posh! Of course there are. There will always be words.

Some of you may be worried about writers block. Never fear, I have some words of wisdom about that (see more words!).

The first rule about how to deal with writers block is to not believe in writers block.

Seriously. Don't even lend it a shred of credibility. It does not exist. Procrastination exists. Writers block does not.

Yes, sometimes we get stuck on "what next" as writers. But that is usually just a very specific point in a story. You are totally allowed to jump forward to after that part where you got stuck and write about the parts that you have some fresh ideas about. Chances are you will get unstuck somewhere in the middle of writing the new part and go back. Remember, you don't have to write in a linear way from A to Z.

Sometimes you are just stuck on a whole story. That's ok. I bet if you listen to your brain a little it will whisper other story ideas to you. You can go work on those while you try to get unstuck on your other project too. You only get stuck if you don't allow yourself that flexibility to hop around.

Here are some other things you can do to jump start your creativity.

First, step away fro the keyboard. You can't always think about what is going to happen in a story if you are also typing it at the same time. Typing and creative thinking are 2 different brain processes and they don't always play nice together.

So what do you do?

Here is a list of the activities which have led to massive brainstorms for me:

Showering
Folding laundry
Gardening/Pulling weeds
Walking around the block
Lounging in bed
Watching a TV show (not often, but a very few times)
Reading a book
Reading a book about writing (especially)
(If you have any suggestions please add to the list in the comments!)

These all involve taking a mental break and free your brain to wander a bit. A wandering brain is the best state to get the creative juices flowing.

So just start writing. And if you get stuck, DON'T WORRY. There is no such thing as writers block. The boogey man....maybe....but not writers block.

50k is a snap. Let's do this!

©2015 Amanda June Hagarty

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