Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Getting Out of a Writing Slump

Before I get into today's post, I want to say a huge congratulations to fellow Thinking to Inking blogger Lauren, who signed with Kevan Lyon of the Marsal Lyon Literary Agency! If you haven't read her "How I Got My Agent" post, go read it. I'll wait.

I hit a writing slump recently.
Writer's block comic
As anyone who's ever experienced a writing slump (or writer's block) knows, it's not a fun state of affairs. I don't know if everyone does this, but after about a month of not writing a word, I started withdrawing from my writer friends. I didn't check in with them as often as I normally do. I wasn't on Twitter much either, because it just kept reminding me I wasn't writing.

But last week, I met up with a group of writer buddies. We had a six-hour conversation about writing and life and lots of stuff in between.
writer meeting
That was the kick in the pants I needed to jump back into my WIP. Now I'm rolling again!

This points out two things:

1) The importance of having writer friends.
Even if you have other people you talk to about your writing (your best friend, your spouse), it's different to talk to people who are also writers and know what you're going through. This holds true even if they don't write what you write. Writers get other writers.

Meeting up with one, two, or even ten other writers periodically is also a great way to keep yourself accountable. Do you really want to be the one showing up at every meeting and saying you haven't made any progress since last time?

2) Sometimes you just need a little time off.
I've been writing continuously for years, and I have to say--taking the time to focus on other things for a few months wasn't necessarily a bad thing. I'm coming back to my WIP with fresh eyes, and I'm already seeing things to fix that I didn't notice before.

This post from Write it Sideways has another good tip on how to break out of a writing slump: have multiple projects to work on. When you're blocked on one, you can switch over to another. Bonus points if it's in a totally different genre or format (a short story instead of a novel, for example).

Have you experienced the dreaded writer's slump? How did you get out of it?

1 comment:

  1. I've always wanted to rename my street's name to Writer's Block. :)