Wednesday, September 22, 2010

WIP Wednesday!

I have some great news to report.

I'm writing again.

At least, I'm excited about writing again. For the last month or so I've been struggling to get words down. But over the last week I've had a few good ideas regarding plot holes and characterization.

I don't have anything to post in terms of WIPs, because I'm in first drafts right now and they are t.e.r.r.i.b.le. in my opinion. BUT! I have a question.

How do you get from THIS ...

What do you do to motivate yourself when you absolutely do not want to write? When writing feels like holding your hand to the fire or pushing a cart full of bricks up a mountainside or chipping at an iceberg with a plastic spoon?


  1. Oh I know exactly how you feel. I've been in an I-don't-even-want-to-look-at-words mood for several weeks now. It's so hard to get motivated...but I like to peruse the blogs and twitter. Just reading what other writers (pubbed and non) are thinking/saying/doing seems to get me back into the writing mood. Good luck!

  2. @Jaimie Thanks! I am trying to follow the mantra "Get it down before you get it right" and I think that will help me stay focused. I have such an impulse to making things perfect the first time around and that is sabotaging my writing.

  3. I put on music, drink a glass of wine, and give myself either a time deadline (15 min) or a wordcount goal (say, 750 words--which seems to be how much I can write without it becoming painful). And then I force it. It's rough, but it gets me through the hump usually. It's starting that's the hard part.

  4. reading is a good one.
    and also critiquing other's work. it helps you see your own work more clearly.
    sometimes though, i just wait it out and throw myself into something completely different, like deep cleaning the house or painting or making halloween costumes...

  5. I watch anime or read manga. Always gets me going again. The Japanese have a way of making things simple but epic, and really boiling things down to what's necessary to show.

  6. @Phoebe Music is a huge help to me ... and sometimes the deadlines work. When I'm in the depths of discouragement making myself adhere to a goal is actually worse, but you're absolutely right about starting being the worst. Once I've "submerged" into a story for at least 15 minutes I'm good to go.

  7. @aspiring_x Yes, actually one of the things that propelled me forward out of this slump was reading a really good book that made me want to go out and write a soul-stirring book of my own.

    @Jaimie Good suggestion about anime ... sometimes I lose myself in my writing because I can't see the forest for the trees, so to speak.

  8. My problem is that I'll get stuck with what I'm working on, and want very badly to start something new. That's a bad habit. So, I try to tell myself that I can't start something new until I finish my current WIP. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't.

  9. Love those visuals!

    If I'm struggling, I sometimes take a break. Walk the dog, do laundry, whatever. Sometimes I'll even drag my poor husband into my plot problems, and he helps me think of new angles.

    I also use write or die by dr. wicked, since it helps me move forward with the draft, and stop staring at a blank screen!

  10. @Alissa Me too!! I have a ridiculously short attention span.

    * Example *

    Me: "So I was thinking I'd like to get ice cream later--ooo hey, squirrels!!"

    No joke.

    I also sternly tell myself that I cannot start new things until old things are finished. This rarely works. Maybe one day.

  11. @Julie My poor husband is also similarly dragged into plotting with me, usually while we're out walking or during a long car ride (then he's a captive audience). This is probably his least-favorite part of being married to a writer.

    Write or Die? I'll have to google that.


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