Raise your hand if you’ve ever wanted to write a novel. Don’t be shy, raise your hand. Writing a novel is a lifelong dream for many people, although few ever accomplish the task. They have ideas and some even go as far as to have notebooks full of scribbles and doodles with their bestselling novel ideas… but that’s where they stay, in little notebooks, crammed in drawers or on an office shelf. Someday, we say, someday when we have more time. Well this year, I said my novel idea had sat in my notebooks and locked away waiting for ‘someday’ to come for too long. It’s a few weeks since November, which many aspiring novelists will immediately recognize as National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo for short. If you’re unfamiliar with NaNoWriMo, check it out here. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to get writers to plant their butts in front of their computer or notebook and hammer out 50,000 words in 30 days. To take their novel from beginning to end in under a month. It was a daunting challenge, but I would not be dissuaded. So, I took the NaNoWrimo Challenge, and spent the next thirty days juggling work, family commitments, and a host of other responsibilities while all the while trying to sneak in 30 or 40 minute writing sessions to work on my novel. 30 days later, although perhaps a bit undernourished and sleep deprived, I emerged, victorious. Now I am an official, NaNoWriMo winner. Was it hard? Yes. Were there bouts of writer’s block? Yes. But I found some useful techniques to break writer’s block and get my 50,000 words out of my head and onto the page. I hope they can help you as well!
|Whether you’re a seasoned pro, or just trying to hammer out your own novel for National Novel Writing Month, writer’s block can strike anytime, anywhere, indiscriminately. How do you conjure creativity amidst your busy schedule? You’re juggling a host of responsibilities- Work, school, friends, family, pets, all of these can crowd in, tire us out, and make us feel like we’re trudging through a bog rather than swimming in a river of creative energy.
Well, there’s good news: With the right tools, you can break writer’s block even during your driest writing spells. Here are 3 ways to wake up your inner creative genius and Beat Writer’s Block!
1. Harness the Power of Pinterest:
Pinterest can be a powerful resource for aspiring authors. It is a virtual pin board for millions of users who collect their favorite pictures, quotes, how-to articles, styles, architecture, and virtually anything that strikes their fancy. If you’re unfamiliar with Pinterest, check out Mashable’s beginner’s guide. You can make individual pin boards to capture any photos, stories, or articles that fit scenes, setting, or characters for your novel.
Here’s how: Say you’re writing the world’s next best selling steam punk adventure novel. Create a Pinterest board titled “Steampunk” and then search pinterest for this term. You’ll find hundreds of pictures that you can scroll through. When you find one that catches your attention or feels like it could fit in the world of your story, pin it to your board.
Spend a few minutes every day searching Pinterest for inspiring images that capture the essence of your novel. You may find a new character, setting, or plot point buried among the thousands of pins. Browse them anytime you feel a spout of writer’s block starting to build up.
Pick an image from your boards and write a scene describing what is happening in that picture. Incorporate that scene into your story. You can make a character wear a specific article of clothing from your pin board or have your protagonist live in that tree house you pinned to your board the last time you were browsing. Maybe you’ve pinned a picture of an adventurous space pirate you found on Pinterest. Make him/her the next character your protagonist meets! This is the power of Pinterest. It is a bottomless well of inspirational images that can be fodder for your next scene or novel. Make a Pinterest board for characters, settings, special objects, clothing, worlds, countries, animals… anything and everything! When writer’s block begins to creep up on you, you’ll discover treasures you pinned to your boards months ago and had completely forgotten about. What are you waiting for? Get pinning!