Keep Your Eye on the Road …
Several years ago in Costa Rica, I rented a car. We were also encouraged to rent a GPS. At one point I was so distracted by the little map on the screen that I plowed through the intersection. Fortunately the other driver saw that I didn’t know what I was doing and yielded just in time.
Hi, Bob Sands here for day three of Street Smart Strategies for The Writer’s Life.
Have you ever been distracted when you are driving? You know it can have serious consequences. Distractions can also spell trouble on the road to The Writer’s Life.
When you are a freelance writer, there are many things that happen along the way that could be labeled as a distraction. But there is one that has the potential to derail your writing if you don’t prepare for it. What is it? Writer’s block.
One online dictionary defines writer’s block as, “a psychological inhibition preventing a writer from proceeding with a piece.” That’s a great definition because it proves that writer’s block is psychological-it is an inhibition rather than an inability.
Writer's block manifests itself in different ways to different people. You might not think you're a “good enough” writer and lose confidence. You might be struggling to come up with a “Big Idea” for your article, sales letter, or whatever copy you're working on. However it happens, it can be both frightening and maddening.
So what can you do when writer’s block becomes a distraction?
Sometimes, you may just need a break. Take a walk, go to the gym, or put it away for 24 hours, if possible.
Change where you’re writing. Sometimes I will move from my office to my patio. Other times I will go to a local coffee shop (along with my noise cancelling headphones!) and try writing there.
Sometimes, writing through writer’s block is the best answer. I will set a timer and free write whatever comes to mind for either 10 or 20 minutes. While doing this, I do not spell check or correct anything. I just write. This helps to bypass the internal critic and gets the creative juices flowing.
Distractions are all around us. We have to be vigilant and watch for any sign that they are beginning to impact our writer’s life.
Join me tomorrow as we talk about where to find help when you really need it.
What do you find most distracting? Won’t you please share it in the comment sections here.
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