Note: This is a repost of a quickie article I wrote for a writing help site a friend and I just rolled out on Facebook. It’s geared toward romance writers, but I’m sharing it here anyway, since procrastination is universal. 🙂
Page 76 has been blank for the last 45 minutes (or the last 45 days) and your heroine is stubbornly refusing to tell you what happens next in your story. Here are a few things you might try to get those words rolling again:
1. Step away… but not far. Take a walk around the block. Play with your dog for awhile. Go to the grocery store and eavesdrop on random strangers. Give your brain a rest, get a snack, watch your favorite old movie on TCM, crochet one of those dolls that covers up rolls of toilet paper while you refill your creative well… just don’t forget to go right back to the computer when you’re done.
2. Get unchronological. If you’ve been angsting so much over the love scene you’re working that it’s keeping you away from your manuscript, skip ahead and write another section. Even if you normally march through your stories in sequential order, shaking things up might be what you need to get you over that stubborn bump.
3. Do something unexpected. If what sounded good in your head is translating to “Ack, this is boring,” or you can’t figure out how to get your characters from one plot point to the next and still keep it interesting, throw something crazy at your character. It doesn’t have to be a rabid monkey attack or an alien invasion, but a small shot of external action can force your MC to engage and revive your stalled story.
Got any anti-procrastination tips? Feel free to share them in the comments!