10 Ways To Get Out Of Writer’s Rut

10 Ways To Get Out Of Writer’s Rut

In this post, we discuss why you probably stop writing, and we list 10 ways to get yourself out of writer’s rut.

I don’t believe in Writer’s Block. I think writers simply get stuck. There are many reasons why this happens. At Writers Write, we always encourage writers to plot their book before they start writing. You need to know where you’re going before you begin.

I have also interviewed more than 100 published authors. Most of these writers have a plan, they have a writing routine, they are open to learning, and they know how their book is going to end. They don’t believe in waiting for the muse. They believe in hard work.

These are the most common reasons why writers stop writing.

10 things writers struggle with when writing a book:

  1. We can’t get beyond one story – usually an old one.
  2. We talk about writing but never start.
  3. We avoid writing uncomfortable or difficult scenes.
  4. We can’t get beyond the synopsis – or the story idea.
  5. We haven’t written a synopsis.
  6. We can’t seem to finish anything.
  7. We don’t know how to start the book, the next scene, or the next chapter.
  8. We keep on repeating what we’ve already written.
  9. We write our characters into corners. (This happens without a plot.)
  10. We write, edit, rewrite, and edit the same scene instead of moving on.

Once we identify these problems, I am able to help my students.

10 Ways To Get Out Of Writer’s Rut

  1. Change the sex of your protagonist or antagonist.
  2. Change viewpoints if you’re stuck. Write it from another character’s perspective. Try writing in a different viewpoint. Write in first person if you always write in third person.
  3. Commit to the writing life. Writers write. Set up a daily writing routine. Set aside a minimum amount of time or commit to writing a number of words every day.
  4. Enrol in a writing class. Leave your old, tired ideas at home.
  5. Make to-do lists for your character. Or send your character shopping for a character he hates.
  6. Play the what if? game for your character. If you still can’t move forward, rewind and get the story back to a point where your character can move on with the action.
  7. Promise yourself a meaningful reward when you finish.
  8. Stop editing. Carry on writing. You can fix the draft later. You’re looking at a minimum of eight rewrites anyway – plenty of time for editing.
  9. Use a timer for the scenes you find difficult to write. Just do it.
  10. Write a synopsis. Or you could even consider plotting your book.

Create a writing habit with Hooked On Writing: 31 Days To A Writing Habit

by Amanda Patterson
© Amanda Patterson

Are you looking for more inspiration? Read these posts:

  1. Beat Writer’s Block With Help From The 4 Elements
  2. 10 Perfectly Practical New Year’s Resolutions For Writers
  3. What Is Your Writing Element? Air, Earth, Water Or Fire?
  4. 10 (Amazingly Simple) Tips to Get You Back on The Writing Track
  5. 13 Ways To Start A Story
  6. What does it take to write a book? The five qualities published authors share
  7. How To Write A Beginning And An Ending That Readers Will Never Forget
  8. Plotting – 10 Basic Dos and Don’ts

Top Tip: Find out more about our workbooks and online courses in our shop.

Posted on: 29th December 2012
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