Having trouble getting the words out

I don’t know if I’m getting burned out or maybe it’s a struggle against writers block, but lately I’ve been having difficulty getting the words on the page. I’ve still been hitting my goal of 500 words of new fiction every day, but I have to admit that it has been a struggle.

So what you do when the words don’t come? Probably the only answer is to keep trying.

I’m not giving up. I’m continuing to write. I’m still going to get my 500 words a day, at least for this week. This week marks the end of the ROW80 challenge. I’m going to tough it out to the end, then I’m going to rethink my goals. For the next round of the challenge, I think I will set some more modest goals. I’ll still have a goal to write every day, but it will be a lot less than 500 words. And I think I’m going to give myself more leeway on the type of writing that I do. For example, I still have a lot of editing to do on Dragons At Dawn. I’m going to count the rewrite time that I spend as my writing for the day.

Another goal that I have for the next three months is going to be to read through the increasingly large stack of writing books that I have, and that I continue to purchase. It’s extremely frustrating having all of these wonderful books on writing, that I know would be a huge help to my craft, and not having the time to read them. So another goal that I’ll have is going to be to read through at least one writing book a week. I’ve also been thinking that some of the writing that I do may simply be from the exercises in the books.

So that’s how I’m going to deal with my burnout. I’ll still keep writing every day, because I feel it’s important to stay in the habit, and because I know that any writing I do is going to help me improve as a writer.

Please share your own experiences with burnout and writers block. How do you deal with it when you’re having trouble getting the words to come out?

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3 Comments

Filed under About Me, ROW80, The Writing Experience

3 responses to “Having trouble getting the words out

  1. Does writing 500 words of “I don’t know what to write” count towards your daily goal? I find that doing that normally forces something to come out. Otherwise I work on one of my many projects. Sometimes the block comes from not wanting to work on one project and working on something else brings life to these typing fingers.

    • I have to admit that working on something else usually helps out. That’s one of the reasons why I’ve been writing the flash fiction. It gives me a break from the work in progress, and stretches my mind in a new direction for just a short while.

  2. I’ve always liked the following quote by Frank Herbert:
    “I have never had the problem of a writing block. I’ve heard about it. I’ve felt reluctant to write on some days, for whole weeks, or sometimes even longer. I’d much rather go fishing, for example, or go sharpen pencils, or go swimming, or what not. But, later, coming back and reading what I have produced, I am unable to detect the difference between what came easily and when I had to sit down and say, “Well, now it’s writing time and now I’ll write.” There’s no difference on paper between the two.”

    But personally, I believe in breaks. I like having a weekend (or at least one day of the weekend) to not write. The projects we work on as writers are with us 24/7. We can’t leave them at the office, but we do have the flexibility as writers to step back from the desk and take a few deep breaths. Take a break after this round and let yourself recharge.

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