You want to write a book. You have a great idea for a story, yet when you sit down at your computer you stare blankly at the screen wondering why your story doesn’t come pouring out of your fingers. Perhaps, you’re suffering from writer’s block.
Writer’s block affects most writers at one time or another. Maybe it’s the intimidating white screen with the flashing cursor that seems to say, “What’s wrong with you? Write the story.” On the other hand, maybe it’s the feeling of inadequacy that no one will want to read what you’ve written. Perhaps, you have "comparison syndrome," unrealistically comparing yourself to other writers. Maybe it’s just a voice in the back of your mind that whispers, “You’ll never be a writer. You’ll never attain your writing dream. Might as well give up.”
Whatever it is, you need to free yourself from it. You need to allow yourself to write. You need to give yourself permission to write a horrible first draft. Celebrate your desire to write. Feed your passion. Don’t let anyone to tell you that you can’t one day see your name in print because you can.
Of course, you wouldn’t expect to sit at the piano without any instruction and play Beethoven. Learning to write fiction is like learning anything else—it takes time, dedication, practice, persistence, and patience. However, once you learn some writing techniques and practice what you’ve learned, you may still encounter writer’s block.
Don’t let it happen to you.
One of the best ways to unblock your mind is to freewrite. Allowing yourself to write whatever pops into your brain can unclog your creative juices. When you freewrite, you gag your internal editor and set him in the corner. You write whatever you want for as long as you want. Let the words fall out onto your keyboard, or paper, and don't stop to analyze them. Don't edit your writing or worry if it makes sense. Freewriting is about getting words onto the screen, or paper. You'll have plenty of time to go back and edit if you decide to include any of your freewriting.
For now, just write whatever comes to mind. Maybe it’s a conversation between your characters, description of the setting, or a more in-depth examination of a sub-plot. Use freewriting to explore one of your characters. Write about her childhood, her talents, or her fears. You may discover something you didn't know about your character that will make your story even stronger.
Or, it may have absolutely nothing to do with your story. You may want to write about an experience you had as a child, the sunset you watched last night, or why you think one of the contestants on American Idol should win. You can even write nonsense just to get your mind working. The point is to write. Once you begin writing, you’ll find that you can easily return to your work-in-progress.
Don’t let writer’s block stop you from writing the story that’s in your heart.