It’s probably a matter of when not if you get stuck with your writing. No matter how well planned your plot, or brilliantly defined your characters, you’re almost guaranteed to hit a wall. These are temporary bumps, less alll-consuming than writers block, but no less frustrating.
Why writing walls appear
If you’ve planned your book to the nth degree, you may think that any pause once you’re underway is impossible. From experience I can tell you, it’s not. Your characters don’t always obey your plot and will throw the whole thing into chaos. On a more granular level, it can be easy to get stuck on singular scenes. Your plan is there but when pen comes to paper, the words just won’t come. So what to do?
Ideas to get you through your writing wall
Re-visit your plot
If your plot has gone off course you’ll need to make a choice. You can re-work it from where it lost its way so it continues as you originally planned or re-work so it will slips along fine in its new heading. Some would argue that the characters define the plot so if you’ve followed them you should continue. But it may be better to work the line back into your original plot, or it may just be that your path is an experiment and you can revert without issue.
Skip a scene and come back later
The simple fix for being stuck on a scene is to just skip it and come back later. This is definitely the way to go when you’re still in the first draft. But don’t feel you have to fill in everything in the second or even third draft. If you can write a rough outline or quick and shonky version of what you want to be in the scene. It will give you something to hang onto when you get back to it. You might even find you find that you can remove the scene without issue. Don’t feel you have to write something in just for the sake of it. Remember if something is really boring for you to write, it might equally bore your readers.
Take a break
Simple but effective, sometimes time away from your writing is the best medicine. You could take a break from writing altogether. Or you may find it better to keep writing just work on something else. Perhaps a short story you’ve been considering, or a few poems to exercise your creativity. Another way of being creative could be an effective break. You could try painting, music-making, flower-arranging – anything that lets you be creative without having to write.
Try a different approach
Sometimes it helps to approach things from a different point of view. You could try writing it all in dialogue, from another characters perspective or in another point of view to see if things work better.
These are just a few ideas on what you could do when you hit a writing wall. What do you think? Do have any other tips and tricks you use? Please share in the comments.