Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Writers Anti-block

Writers block is an ugly thing. It can take all those wonderful words that have been running in your mind and make them disappear. A split second and months of carefully planned out dialogues and scenarios are gone.

I don't know if all writers do this, the planned scenarios bit, but from all the quotes I've seen on Pinterest about how writers never stop writing, I'd like to believe it's true. I'd like to think we are all these scary obsessive people that can't help but work constantly. It would make me feel a little better anyway. Especially when the honey, or the brats are trying to get my attention and I shush them because I'm busy thinking....thinking about writing...

The only things that I have found that can help with a block, other than a break from writing, is music and research.

Music can help get you in the mood, seriously, and not some cheesy, bow chica wow wow type of mood. But the mood you need to feel in order to get into that one characters head, or that one action sequence. Music helps.

Research, on the other hand, can inspire. Some of my best idea's and block wall climbers have come from research.

When I was working on the Wild Hunt, I went through ups and downs while writing it. I even took a six month long vacation 80,000 words into it. The one problem I kept coming across was the need for a myth. I wanted something substantial and real to back my characters. I knew I wanted Lorelei to see ghosts. I knew she'd experience a world of pain and loss that shaped the damaged individual she became. Knowing those things however, couldn't help me come up with a myth.

Sure, I could have just made something up, but how much cooler is it that I actually found one that fit the story I was trying to tell. Something that could explain her aversion for ties, labels, and restraints of any kind. An aversion that was actually something that gave her real power. A reason to explain her ability to see ghosts, and a tie to the supernatural world.

That's when I found the Cwn Annwn. They were a long awaited blessing in disguise. I had a friend ask me recently if what I wrote was all planned out. My answer, was ineloquent and choppy. Sometimes, but not really.

When I write I let myself imagine the characters in my head. I imagine them in certain scenarios and try to imagine again what they would do, and say while in those scenarios. I think about where I want the story to go and what could happen to get me there.

I swear a majority of what I do is all about the what could happen. The ability to imagine a thousand different scenarios. So when I say that I have anti writers block ideas, what I mean is I have ideas that will help you get writing.

These are not scientific fixes. These are just things that work for me. At the moment I jumped ahead while writing The Otherside, because I was having a hard time moving the story forward, that means I need to get back to the drawing board, and come up with ideas.

Move the story forward.

Sometimes you get lucky, and your characters surprise you. Sometimes you do a mountain of research while listening to Ben Howard's Black Files over, and over again, praying for that one great break, that moment of inspiration.

So turn on your Spotify, and fire up your Google search. Those are by far the two best helpers for writers block that I know.
Ben Howard-"Further Away"

"And nobody gives a fuck about you, tell you its a damn shame, prettiest eyes in the whole world, the same fool in the same game."
"You've been growing up, you've been growing on
Further away, further away."

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