It’s every writer’s worst nightmare. That dreaded blinking cursor on a white screen. The thoughts and storyline just won’t come. We’ve tried hard in preparing our stories, but then when the rubber meets the road . . . the words become stagnant.
At least this is how I’ve been feeling over the past while. I have great intentions of getting lots of words written. I finished my character sketches, started the plotline, but when I sat down at my computer, the cursor stared at me. The following thought rushed through my mind.
Where are the words?
Or worse yet . . .
Will they ever come?
Have you gone through something similar? Have you had a dry season where every word you typed felt forced? What can we do when this happens? Well, here are some thoughts and ideas on how we can help with this issue.
Step away from the keyboard (or page if you’re writing) – Take a break and perhaps go for a walk or play music to clear your mind. Do mindless house chores. This sometimes frees up those thoughts you were trying so hard to write. They can pop into your mind while you’re doing the dishes or laundry. Then after a break, get back to it!
Read – Reach for that book you’ve been putting off reading. Sending your mind to an imaginary world can sometimes spark creativity. It can help give you ideas of your own or put those needed words into your head. Finally! Read as much as you can.
Go somewhere out of the norm to write – Need to be inspired? Take your laptop or journal to your favorite café and write. It’s a great way to sit and watch others interacting and maybe catch a few conversations (inconspicuously of course). They can trigger new ideas.
Go on a writer’s retreat – Book a weekend away to write. Plan a quarterly trip. This could be for one night or more depending on your pocket book. There’s just something to be said about getting away from our homes to write. It forces us to put our fingers to keyboard or pen to paper.
Watch a movie – There’s a fine line here of getting too wrapped up in TV, but sometimes watching a movie or show will help your creativity. Try it!
Pray – This one should really be number one, but I wanted to close with it. There’s nothing like taking your concerns to the Lord. Ask Him to give you the words you need and the creativity. I always ask him to give me “His” words, not mine. I want to write for Him. He has the perfect story for you.
These are a few ideas that have helped me get my inspiration back and words on the blank screen. You may have others.
Let’s stop being scared of that blinking cursor, but use it to remind us of why we write. We write for Him. He will give us the words we need because they’re His.
How about you? What other ideas do you have to spark creativity? Share with us.
This post first appeared on the ACFW website.