Overcoming the Writing Slump

Lately, I’ve gotten a number of similar questions all kind of centered around “The Writing Slump.” The Writing Slump is not exactly the same of writer’s block. Writer’s block means you can’t write and aren’t writing. 

Writer’s block in my experience is more of an excuse to avoid writing than anything else. The writing slump is not an excuse. The writing slump suggests you are trying, you are writing, but it either is not coming easily or you just don’t enjoy as much as you should. It means you’re writing as much as you can, struggling to put down the next sentence. You still do. But it’s hard.

How do you get over the writing slump?

Most will just end with time. You’ll start liking your story again and get into it again. But there are a few things you can try to kick-start your creativity.

  • Plan ahead. If you’re not a planner, sometimes just knowing how the next two or so scenes might look will help move the story along. When you’re not focusing on what next?! you can sit back and enjoy writing it a little more.
  • Introduce a new character. Even if you’ve planned out the whole story from start to finish, if you’re in a slump, sometimes it means you’re just bored. Throw in a new character. Give that character some strong emotions and a lot of baggage. This will give you a new exciting conflict to juggle.
  • Suddenly, PLOT TWIST! This means getting inventive. Write something you didn’t see coming. Just do it. It will give you a new plot puzzle to solve and it will give you a lot of fall out to write about. Guaranteed to give you at least two scenes.
  • If all else fails, write something new. I don’t mean abandoning your project, just put it off to the side for a little while. Write something short. Start with the conflict and resolve it quickly. Make it a short story and be done. It can involve the same characters you’ve been working on, or not. It’s up to you. Sometimes just writing something different is just the thing to get over that problem.

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