Wednesday, May 1, 2013

How to Unclog a Stuck Blogger

I've been stuck. Not with writing my novel or editing or any of that other good stuff writers get blocked about. Nope, I just haven't blogged in a while. Not here anyway. And I feel a little like Solomon when he pointed out that there's nothing new under the sun. So here I am, digging up from some deep place inside me, ways to jumpstart my thoughts in blogger fashion.
  1. First, I’m freewriting. When the juices aren’t even simmering, that’s a good place to start. I can freewrite about the trouble of free writing. Freewrite about blogging. Freewrite about the plants I’ve killed off over winter because I forgot to water them. The point is to write about any little old thing that rolls into my brain, uncensored. Stir the pot.
  2. Phase two, I journal. How is this different than freewriting? It’s uncensored, too, of course. But journaling is usually a bit more focused. It’s jotting down things that are important to my day or my moment. This might even be better than freewriting, because it kindles a little fire under things I'm already concerned or excited about. I begin to see parallels between my writing life and my real life, analogies burst out, life lessons that I'll carry into your stories, my blogs, my articles -- sometimes intentionally, other times subconsiously.
  3. I read a few favorite blogs. Apparently a lot of people never dry up. There are a gazillion new posts every day. So I tap into them. Other people’s thoughts can usually stir response or passion or ideas. I don’t lollygag over them too long, but long enough to fill the tank.
  4. I could take a walk. To be honest, while this seems to work well for a lot of writers, it doesn’t do a great deal for me. I tend to get distra – squirrel! – See what I mean? I think about everything but writing when I take a walk.
  5. Now, taking a shower, there's an idea! Showers work better for me than walks. Maybe it’s all that warm flow of water heating up my brain. Maybe it’s the dull white walls surrounding me, devoid of any possibility of distraction. Some of my best ideas come in the shower. Unfortunately, I can’t keep pen and paper in there.
  6. If all else fails, I'll dip into a file of previous notes. You have one of those, right? Someplace where you once jotted ideas or stored clippings, or maybe you even began work on a post and abandoned it? I'll see if there’s anything that’s marinated long enough in there.

If none of these ideas works to get me unstuck, I have only to be patient. If I keep at doing these, eventually I'll have an epiphany.

Write on!
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