Sometimes it can take me hours to write a post. Other times the words fall out of my head, onto the computer.
Today, this post is not falling onto the page. I have started it several times and it is never right.
It is important when this happens, to keep plugging through even though you struggle. Sometimes the most difficult posts, are the most successful. Then there are the posts that are so easy to write, that you worry they will be successful.
It is important when you reach these hard writing days that you persevere. Writing every day is the most important to increase your productivity. You have to produce words to publish. Even if the basis for your article is less than perfect, with editing you can make an article out of it. If you have nothing written, you have nothing to edit. Even on the most difficult days, you need to keep going. These are three tips, that you can use to help with this process.
Turn your brain off
It sounds stupid to tell a writer to turn their brain off when they are meant to be creating, but it works. Have you ever spent five minutes trying to come up with the name of a film you enjoyed? No matter how you try, the title doesn’t come to you, for it to then pop into your head when you are washing up. It is the same principle.
If you are struggling, stepping away for half an hour can help. Don’t step away for good, but take a break. Take the dog for a walk, take yourself for a walk if you don’t have a dog. Let your brain think about the writing problem, without the stress of staring at the computer. You will be surprised how many ideas drop into your head.
I had a large plot hole in one of my novels, during a fifteen-minute walk with the dog I saw how to fill the hole. I could have sat at the table for hours and never come up with the solution, the fresh air helped.
Don’t worry about the technical aspects
If you write and worry about spelling and grammar you will spoil your brain flow. It is far better to type and forget about the technical aspects of writing. This can all be sorted in the editing process. Remember you need words to edit, to publish.
Even if the post is jumbled and a random collection of thoughts this can all be altered in editing. You can change the flow of the article, reorder the paragraphs with the minimum of hassle.
Another technique I have used which seems strange to some writers is to change the medium that I write in. Most of my work is completed on a laptop. When I am extremely stuck changing to paper and pen can re-ignite the flame. There is something about listening to the pen glide over the paper that helps my writing process. You might be the same, give it a try.
Move on and try to write something else.
There are times when all the techniques, in all the how-to articles, don’t work. For those times I move onto another post completely. It may be that the post is wrong for your mindset at the time, not that it isn’t worth writing. For these days I store what I have on a draft and move on to another post.
If you are a reader like me you might have experienced this before. Have you ever been reading a book and don’t feel it for that day? When you move onto another book you can devour it.
These posts are gold, on a different day, they will flow and be easy to write.
I mentioned at the beginning of this article that I was struggling to write it. The first paragraph was written for this article two months ago. I came back to it today with a fresh mind and managed to write the rest in ten minutes. Walking away and trying something else does work.
Writing is a difficult process. Some days everything works in your favour, sometimes it doesn’t. With any job, we need to persevere until we reach our goals.
You have to have something written, to be able to edit it into a masterpiece.