I have been sitting on my incomplete manuscripts for quite a while due to several reasons, the main of which, is this huge invisible barrier stopping me from going near the manuscripts.
When I say manuscripts I literally meant several books in the making. All of it is fiction and not in the same genre. I have a romance book written midway although the plot lines are complete, a horror/fantasy in its first few chapters with half complete plot lines and finally a satire/women's fiction in its first few chapters with a complete plot line.
Now, with three completely different books, it is quite difficult to complete any one of it without worrying about the others. Thus, this barrier came up. Also the worry of not being able to fulfill the demands of the characters, not able to find the time to fill out the plots, do more research, stress at work, lack of time and various more petty issues, had me freezing up and my ideas drying out.
Arrggghhhh...it is not easy getting rid writers block.
It is indeed distressing and frustrating to be staring at the screen and rereading the first few chapters and not be able to continue with it. So to overcome this self-induced writer's block, I came up with several methods which worked for me.
1) Relax and start doodling (or fiddling with the keyboards - whichever medium you are using to write) - formulate words and sentences not necessarily related to you book. It could be anything, just random words. I find that this often ends up with me continuing on with my storyline.
2) Check out writer's blogs - not to get ideas but essentially to have a feel of how they deal with such situations and also to immerse yourself into the writing world. This exercise often gets me all geared up and inspired to write.
3) Stop staring at the empty screen/notebook - the words are not going to write themselves. If it is stressing you out, just walk away. Go take a short walk, have a cup of tea/coffee or just stare out of the windows to clear your mind and stress. Stress is the one main factor blocking the ideas from flowing.
4) Read a really good book by your favourite author - great works are really great inspirations and motivations.I always find myself raring to type the moment I put down a really good read.
5) Work on the plot instead - okay, so you are really coming up blank. Why not go into the basics of the story line instead? Come up with complete biodatas for the characters, give them family backgrounds, career backgrounds, likes, dislikes, places they've been, where they were born, what was their first words and complete your research on any facts in the story. At least, you are getting some work done instead of staring at an empty screen!
These are but a few tips I find quite useful for me. So, now that my block has been destroyed I have a very real problem. Which one should I complete first? I think I will work on the romance and hopefully, I will be able to get it completed and out of the way!