By: Kitty Holman
One of the biggest things that affects us freelance writers and professional bloggers is writer's block, as many of you are probably aware. All over the Internet, I've seen some crazy tips for defeating writer's block. I've read about writers who take showers when they get blocked, while others take a break and go exercise. I've even read about writers who eat chocolate and peanut butter when they can't produce. I can appreciate the novelty of some of these methods, and I bet some of them truly work; however, I insist that the worst thing a writer can do when blocked is leave the computer or writing desk.
I believe that writer's block is actually a result of a frame of mind or an attitude that sometimes writers fall into. Because of this, I think the way to get unblocked is simply to change the focus of your mind. Instead of worrying about being blocked and how to fix the block, instead worry about your writing and how you can accomplish your creative goals. Focus on the positive! Don't get up from the desk! Instead, you should work through some pre-writing exercises. These will help refocus your mind and get you writing in no time.
The following are my three favorite pre-writing exercises. They are very basic, but they get the job done:
When I brainstorm, I really storm. I try to come up with as long a list of topic ideas as possible within five minutes of hard work. I usually brainstorm with a pen and paper, because I think the action of writing by hand helps focus my brain on the task at hand. I can't get distracted by the internet or other applications on the computer. Brainstorm should be frenzied and fast-paced. You shouldn't have time to think about your ideas; instead, you should just write as they come out. You can work on the list later, after you have had some time to think about each idea critically. For now, though, you are simply trying to create a list of blog post ideas.
Freewriting is perhaps the most useful way of getting words into a draft, and often these words form the basis of your new post. When you free write, open a new file, cover up your computer screen or turn off your monitor, and set your timer for five or ten minutes. This next step is incredibly important: write nonstop for the entire freewriting session. You must never stop moving your fingers over your keyboard. Just let whatever ideas you have about the topic in your head to come out on the page. You don't want to edit these ideas or these sentences as you write them, because you just want the momentum to let you write for as long as possible. This is the best way, I think, of breaking out of writer's block: just write!
Once I have my list brainstormed, and some ideas written in my freewriting session, I can usually begin to feel the creative juices flowing for my post idea. At this point, it's helpful for me to try to visualize how my post will work out, so I turn to some mapping pre-writing. You can use mapping to build out how you think your ideas connect. Put your main topic in the center, and then draw lines out from it to the subtopics and other points you wish to make. In a way, these visualizations will help you create the different paragraphs and sections in your post.
Kitty Holman, regularly writes on the topics of nursing colleges. She welcomes your comments at her email Id: firstname.lastname@example.org.