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Overcoming Writer's Block

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Since we all know those fiendish passages in a story that you keep fumbling around with forever, I thought I'd share two sites I know of that try to help you push through those.

 

If you're more of a "carrot" person, Written? Kitten! might be the one for you. You select the word count threshold, then every time you reach it you get rewarded with a cute kitten pic from flickr (sadly, I don't know of any site with puppies).

 

The "stick" people among you might prefer Write or Die, which, to use their own words, puts "Prod" into Productivity. You either write for a pre-specified amount of time, or bad things happen. How bad is up to you.

 

Both are free, at least in Web App form.

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I'm more of an "it'll come to me when it's ready" sort of writer.

 

 

Which may explain why my stories rarely get finished!

 

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I don't have much trouble writing but my problem is that it's not linear. The words that start pouring out might be the middle or even the end of the story even before I have any idea what the first sentence is going to be.

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Hey, I hear you!  I tend to skip around, writing the scenes that "come" to me and sort of outlining the rest.  And even the scenes that were very clear to me sometimes change considerably, all by themselves as it were.

 

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If I started skipping around, i'd never finish a single fic :unsure: - I have to keep the chapters that are bubbling inside of me as the incentive to make me finish the passages I'm struggling with ... "come on, only two more paragraphs of combat to go and you'll finally be able to write down that scene that's been going around in your head for the last two days" :lol:.

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I have to keep the chapters that are bubbling inside of me as the incentive to make me finish the passages I'm struggling with .

Oh no. I have tried that and it's like going through withdrawal off some kind of drug. If I don't get it out, write it down, I get all jittery and irritable.

 

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... and I forget all the lovely phrases that were inside those bubbles!

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Oh no. I have tried that and it's like going through withdrawal off some kind of drug. If I don't get it out, write it down, I get all jittery and irritable.

 

Perfectly put :). And the only cure, for me, is to apply pants to chair and fingers to keyboard and finally force myself through that pesky passage so I can release those pent-up paragraphs.

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my problem is that it's not linear

 

I'm in the process of writing a Torchwood/Highlander/Doctor Who crossover for Crossover Big Bang. The beginning is done, the end is done and the middle is driving me nuts! So far it stands at 30k words or so. This is not the first time that sort of thing has happened in a fic and it seems to happen more often in the Torchwood/Doctor Who universes for some reason...

 

Also happens with fic series - I started writing Merlin fic in the 'present day' of the show, then my muses decided to inform me that Gaius and Uther had a thing going in the past and I wrote the fic that told the story of the end of the relationship way before I wrote the one were they met for the first time. Younger Gaius is fun to write, when I get the time. Of course, the series has ended up as a crossover...

 

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I don't generally write linear either.  Never have, never will.  It works for some people to sketch out their whole story before they start, but that has never worked for me.  Often I don't really know where it's completely going until I hear the characters in my head, put them down on paper and see where they are going to lead me.  I do have "time line" of sorts and I am able to slot pieces into it, but the pieces only slowly grow together to form a cohesive story.  One book I wrote in 2004/2005 had 20 chapters, and I had chapters 19 & 20 written before 16 & 17.

 

So here's my advice on the whole writer's block thing... forget the linear... just write whatever scene you DO know because that way you are still writing.  

 

There are no die-hard rules for getting a story out... just do it.  The pieces sort themselves out later.

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I have writers block at the moment, Im supposed to be helping my niece with a writing competition assignment, but, truth to be told, I think she's a better writer than me :lol4:

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Nobody thinks of themselves as a good writer, Sherlocked. :hugz: I'm sure that together, your niece and you will rock that competition!

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Awww, thanks! 

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