An MFA Student's Guide to Beating Writer's Block
Updated: Nov 23, 2020
I get it. You've been staring at that blank Word document for about an hour now. You might not even be sure what your story is about! Every time you type a sentence, it comes out the wrong way, and you end up erasing it. How do you break yourself out of this cycle?! Here's a few ideas...
Stand up and stretch. Stop looking at the page! The most productive thing that you can do in this situation is to let go of all the tension in your body. Take a few minutes to release that pent up frustration!
Take a walk. Nature is healing for the soul. I find that just five minutes out in some fresh air rejuvenates my mind and body. Plus, you might see something outdoors that could spark an idea! Keep an eye on who you see out there... Might be a great character study...
Say positive affirmations. Take a moment to remind yourself that good writing isn't forced. Tell yourself that you are strong, talented, and a great writer. Sometimes writer's block arises from a lack of confidence in oneself!
Look up a random word/phrase generator. If you're writing a creative piece, grab a random word or phrase (I like to use this website). Use that phrase as a spark for your next writing topic! For example I got: Not the Sharpest Tool in the Shed. That gave me a great idea for a character.
Write a list. What are ideas, themes, motifs, etc. that you would want to make sure to include in your writing? It could be anything from a red sweater to Manifest Destiny! Create a list of writing "must-haves."