As any creative person can tell you, having a block in your inspiration is probably one of the worst things ever. But over coming a block and making things work in art or writing is probably one of the best things ever.
Currently I’m working on something of a semi-secret fantasy series with the incredibly talented Laura Lee as my illustrator. Having this collaboration along with being able to use my editor and friend, Mel Paisley, as a sounding board makes getting over writer’s block just that much easier. A lot of the time – with this project and previous projects – I have found talking through the plot holes or pacing issues with someone I can trust and this actually works more times than not when I’m working through issues and actually prevents getting stuck in a rut. It isn’t always instantaneous. Often times I’ll talk through the same problem over the course of several days before I figure out what I want to do; which in itself can also be frustrating as I feel even less productive.
Another thing that helps when I’m stuck in a rut, is just let the words run. I have written many scene I have hated so I can get to the scenes I want to write (I’m sadly incapable of skipping scenes while I’m writing). The joy of drafts is really where this technique comes in handy. I hand write all of my work and then type it up as I go. It helps me rethink what is wrong with my original scene and sometimes I end up just cutting it out all together, adding any important information into other sections of the story. Part of this, also, is just getting the writing done. It’s being productive and forcing you to keep writing instead of abandoning the project part way.
For me, though, the ultimate way to get over writer’s block is scrap the scene entirely and start over. Re-do your outline for the key events that take place and work your way up from there. Sometimes the scene itself isn’t the problem, but how it unfolds into the rest of the story is. This has been what I’ve been finding myself doing more and more lately with my writing as a story very rarely beings as the same story it ends as.
That’s my two cents on the matter. What helps you over come writer’s block? Let me know in the comments!