Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Writer Wednesday: Encouragement

REMINDER: I'll be on a one-week blogging break beginning Friday, July 8th. I'll see you back here on Friday, July 15th.

Lately, I've seen a lot of writers who are just down in the dumps. They're either discouraged because they are experiencing writer's block or they are in the process of separating from a publisher who isn't right for them or they've been on submission for months with no bites from editors. :(

As you probably know, my daughter has been writing her first book. She was so excited when she first began and the idea just flowed. She wrote every day with no shortage of ideas. Well, she's hit the late-middle slump. She knows the ending of her book, but is stuck at the point leading to the climax. She needs some encouragement, and I'm sure some of us could use some too.

So, today I'm asking you to share your words of wisdom in the comments for how you push through when you're going through the many downs that we experience on this roller coaster we call writing. To start you off, here's my advice:

Freewrite anything and everything that comes to mind. Sometimes the act of writing (no matter what about) will inspire creativity and get you over the hump.

*If you have a question you'd like me to answer from the other side of the editor's desk, feel free to leave it in the comments and I'll schedule it for a future post.

16 comments:

  1. Your dear mom has given you writing advice so let me give you some life advice young one. If writing is not coming to you and the free writing is not enough, put the pen, pencil or laptop down. Go outside and do something. Hang with friends, hang with family, go on an outing, stay in and watch Netflix or cable, even read a favorite book. Sometimes the blocked flow of writing is just your body needing a break. So take it and when the tap flows again. Write on little one, write on. :)

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  2. I remind myself that everyone's journey is different. Some people are picked up fast, others slow. When I was in the trenches for about a dozen years, I recalled articles of how other writers also took forever to get published. During the wait, improve your craft.

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    1. That's very true. It's a different journey for everyone.

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  3. Have a good break, Kelly!

    I think at that point in the writing process when you're not quite sure of where to take it, it's best to step away for a bit, do something else to stir your creativity, and then come back to it. The solution presents itself on a subconscious level while you're doing other things.

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    1. That's very true, William. The subconscious is great that way.

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  4. The beauty of the first draft is that it can be bad. Really bad. I always get stuck at that same point in a manuscript and I just trudge through. Write the basics. Sometimes just writing which steps the story takes to get to the end. Because you can go back and write it better after you've finished. And sometimes you have to feel the finish before you can come up with the true struggle of how it gets there. Good luck, Ayla!

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  5. Get up and dance when the words stop flowing. Seriously. Blare the music and get the body moving. They'll return. AND SKIP THE DANG SCENE AND FILL IN THE BLANKS LATER. There's no reason we have to write sequentially.

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    1. I agree on both accounts. I write out of order all the time, and music/singing/dancing is very inspiring.

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  6. I am in that exact place with 2 books-in-progress. :/

    I'd say write drunk, edit sober, but I don't want to be encouraging your child to pick up bad habits.....

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  7. The middles are the most challenging, I agree. Sometimes-- talking to another writer or creative person helps. But what has helped me the most is to write a minimum amount (for me it's a rough word-count) every day, as I plow through the middle-muddle. A one-more-step each day sort of thing. Then comes the distant sighting of the end, and the winds pick up. When looking back, I am amazed how decent much of the middle actually turned out...

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  8. Freewriting does help tremendously. I'd also suggest reading stories that get you fired up, and watching films of the same nature. Then quickly writing your thoughts down. And ask questions. What if xxx does this? Sorry to hear so many of your friends are going through down times lately, Kelly.

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  9. You have to be so proud of your daughter!

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  10. Meg Cabot posted something on Twitter about this...basically saying that we all get to a point somewhere in our books where we feel like it sucks. We have to keep writing anyway. I think knowing all of us feel that way helps. I've found the only way to get over that hump is to just keep writing. We don't think it's going to work out, but it always somehow does.

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  11. Yes! Freewrite, even the silly stuff and go for walks. Walking loosens up the creative side of the brain. I find that if I walk with a problem on the brain, I often find a solution by the end of. The bigger the problem, the longer the walk.

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