Writer’s block isn’t a new occurrence to writers. There comes a time when you put on your laptop, determined to write and you end up staring at the blank screen. Sometimes, you begin a great idea that you’re excited about. You can’t wait to finish and publish it. You’re sure it will be the bomb. Then all of a sudden, you’re stuck. This can be very frustrating especially when you have a deadline to meet. And as a screenwriter, not meeting deadlines is one of the surest ways to lose credibility in the film making world.
Don’t worry. You’re not alone. Every writer experiences it from time to time, even the famous ones. Writer’s block is completely normal. However, it doesn’t mean you are permitted to remain stuck. It’s bad for your creativity. Want to break out of writer’s block? There are many ways. But only five of them are listed. Continue below to learn what they are.
If your ideas have run out, don’t force yourself. Relax. Watch movies, listen to music, read your favorite books, sleep, eat, exercise. Do anything to get your mind temporarily off your screenplay. Writer’s block often occurs when your mind is stressed out. When the ideas are jumbled up inside your head and overwhelming. It’s your mind telling you to take a break and reorganize yourself. Listen to your mind. Take a break and reorganize yourself. Trust me when you do, your creative genius will come rushing back.
#2. Remove distractions
It’s okay to relax and do other stuffs when you’re stuck. But it’s not okay to let those stuffs distract you from your work completely. For instance, if your hobby is watching pictures and video skit on social media, you shouldn’t let them distract you. I use the social media example because most of us use social media a lot and they can be very distracting. Ever opened Instagram to search for a specific idea for your screenplay and you end up going through several funny videos and beautiful pictures forgetting the main purpose? Yeah, that’s a distraction. As a matter of fact, you should get rid of your phone or other devices you use to watch them. Just for a while until you’re done with your screenplay. Your phone, your friends and even your family can be your distraction. Which brings us to the next point.
#3. Change your environment
You probably can’t afford to stay in a hotel for the weekend. Or you don’t have that uncle that has a beautiful house tucked away inside the quiet woods with exotic sceneries like we see on TV. It’s okay. Changing your environment doesn’t necessarily have to involve expenses. But staying in one environment all the time can sometimes dull your brain. You can simply go to a quiet corner in your compound where you know no one will disturb you. You can go to the mall, restaurant, bar, garden etc. Sometimes, noise brings inspiration. While some writers find their muse in quiet places, others find theirs in noisy places. Just find what works for you and do it.
#4. Read other screenplays
This is my personal favorite. Reading other screenplays and books relating to screenplays are very helpful to overcoming writer’s block. Reading opens up your brain for fresh ideas. They inspire you to write. So, when you’re stuck, just pick up a screenplay or any book on screenwriting and read. It will work.
#5. Just write
Of all the tips, this is the most effective. Ironic, right? Considering the whole idea of a writer’s block is because you can’t write! Well, a saying goes that you cure poison with a poison. You cure writer’s block with writing. When you don’t seem inspired to write, when it seems you’ve hit a wall, just open your note book, pick up your pen or open your laptop and write. Anything at all. Just write whatever pops into your head. Even if it’s nonsense, write it down. When you’re done and you’re going through it, you’ll be surprised that a lot of it actually make sense. So, open your mind and let it flow. You just might find your inspiration in the process.
In conclusion, you have to remove the fear. You have to remove the ‘spirit’ of perfectionism. They’re bigtime road blockers. When you’re struggling to write, follow these tips. They work.
Do you have more? Don’t be a stranger. Please share with us in the comment section.