Having writer’s block? It happens to the best of us. And while no one has found a cure or solution to writer’s block, many have attempted. So this is my attempt, along with some ideas from Natalie Goldberg’s, Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within, to help all of you, and myself, beat it.
HOW TO GET INTO IT
- Write for 10 minutes beginning with “ I am a friend to…” and only list inanimate objects.
- Write with a friend– this reminds us to step outside ourselves when we are stuck too deep into ourselves.
- Let people eat cars.
We should write and not ask “Why?” Let our minds eat up everything and spew it out on paper with great energy.
- Try a simple beginning with simple words to express what you have inside.
- Write about your obsessions.
Harness that power.
- Take LSD (figuratively).
At some point in our lives we have to be crazy, we have to lose control, step outside of our ordinary wa-y of seeing, and learn that the world is not the way we think it is, that it isn’t solid, structured, and forever.
THINGS TO WRITE ABOUT
- Make a list of things you see.
Your writing comes out of a relationship with your life and its texture. The list helps to activate your writing quickly and cut through resistance.
- When writing, become an animal.
Move slowly, stalking your prey, which is whatever you plan to write about. Turn off your logical mind. Don’t hold in your stomach. Let the writing percolate below the level of thought forms, in the subconscious and through your veins.
- If you find you are having trouble writing and nothing seems real, just write about food.
Write about the best meal you ever had, the worst meal, the ideal meal. Be specific. Give us the details.
ONCE YOU GET WRITING
- Keep your hand moving
- Don’t cross out- even if you write something you didn’t mean to write, leave it
- Don’t worry about spelling, punctuation, grammar
- Lose control
- Don’t think. Don’t get logical
- Go for the jugular
If something comes up in your writing that is scary or naked, dive right into it. it probably has lots of energy.
The hardest part for me is always getting myself to write down the words but once I do, my mind doesn’t stop. So start by writing about anything, food, a memory, your first pet. Something will trigger and then you’ll really get into what it is you want to say.
In the wise words on Jack Kerouac, “Be submissive to everything. Open. Listening.”
Kira Byczek is an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in Communications and English at Rollins College.