The Joy Of Writing

Overcome writer's block with a bangOh, the joy of writing

As I assume many of my readers are writers, I know they will understand when I say that there are times when the words just get stuck.

Some call it writer’s block, but really it’s just a moment in a story when the ideas dry up or you feel that the story is drifting.

While there is a vast depository of information and ideas on this topic, I didn’t think it should dissuade me from offering my own little helpful tips to keep the joy of writing alive.

When these wordless moments hit me, I resort to some of the following tactics to help me get going again. They usually work.

Make a sudden noise

A loud explosion, a door slamming or something smashing against a wall just near the protagonist’s head. This one always gets me underway again and at the same time adds a nice element of surprise in the story.

What would my character just hate to happen right now?

An email from an angry ex-spouse or a demand for payment from the bailiff. The onset of a nasty head cold just before the wedding day. A secret affair is not a secret anymore. What about choking on a fish bone in the middle of a romantic dinner for two?

Open a door or drawer

This is an oldie but a goodie. You just never know what you’ll find hiding in there.

Leave it hanging

This usually means extensive use of the delete key. Go back a few paragraphs and just stop the chapter as something is about to happen. ‘She opened the drawer and couldn’t believe her eyes.’ Stop it there and start a new chapter about her next door neighbour’s gay son.

Trip over something

Another oldie, but it never fails. Just get your character moving and ‘kerplonk’! Break a leg, arm or even better open a gaping wound and let the blood flow freely.

Start an argument

This is a brilliant way to get the dialogue going and moving the story along at a pace. Lots of screaming and yelling, expletives and throwing of coffee mugs.

So what are your favourite writing prompts to get you moving again?

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Derek Haines

Derek Haines is an Australian author, living in Switzerland.

2 thoughts on “The Joy Of Writing

  • Thanks for the tips! Im going to try to use them. Now a tip form me, there is a double sentence in there :)

    “Some call it writer’s block, but really it’s just a moment in a story when the ideas dry up or you feel that the story is drifting.”


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