Methods to overcome writer’s block

One of the hardest things about being a blogger is the need to consistently write new material.  When you are trying to write worthwhile content, this can become an overwhelming issue.  If you are anything like me, this can lead to frustration with the process.  That frustration inevitably results in procrastination of the writing process, followed by complete shutdown.

Here are some techniques and guides to help you have a constant flow of material and to help prevent the onset of procrastination.

Plan Ahead

Successful bloggers suggest that you plan and write ahead.  I know that I find it more difficult to write one post at a time.  I am much more prolific when I brainstorm ideas ahead of time and have three or four good pieces I am working on simultaneously.  That way, I always have something ready to go.

ProBlogger.net has a great article that suggest developing a writing schedule.  Develop a schedule of writing all of a week’s posts at once, then take the time to refine them as you publish.  Try to add an extra post per week to build up some extra content to publish later.  Tony Newton at Tony’s Blog Tips makes a similar suggestion.  He brainstorms 7 days of posts on the weekend so that he has something to work on throughout the week.

Start With a Headline

As Julie Andrews says in The Sound of Music, “Let’s start at the very beginning.  A very good place to start.”  Start with a killer headline that will grab your readers.  Brainstorm a few and write them down (or type them in your blogging platform of choice).

Work on Writing

The following resources will provide you with a plethora of techniques and ideas to combat writer’s block and get you writing again.  You should be able to find enough material here to keep you going like the energizer bunny:

Don’t Procrastinate

This last point is the most important.  It happens when I’m feeling unmotivated or overwhelmed by the process.  Certainly, we all fall victim.  I’m tired, not feeling creative, can’t think of anything to write about, yadda, yadda, yadda.  But those excuses will cause to you just put of what you must inevitably do – write!  Also over at ProBlogger.net, Karen Andrews provides some ideas on overcoming procrastination: Are Excuses Hurting Your Blogging Success?

  • Go into your drafted posts. Find one that’s been sitting there for ages; the one you don’t quite know what to do with, but can’t bring yourself to delete. (We must all have one or two!)
  • Scan it briefly and then write down a word or phrase which best suits its theme/tone. Sometimes it helps to just have that guideline back in the foreground of your mind so you can then develop it further, with the insight you’ve, hopefully, gained since it was originally drafted.
  • After consideration, be honest. If you cannot breathe life into the piece, let it go. Not all ideas come to fruition. Make the decision to keep it ‘just in case’ if you must, but in my experience it’s often best to delete, thus freeing up my mind for the next project.

There is enough information here to keep you busy writing from now until doomsday.  To quote Merlin Mann’s paraphrase of Laurence Olivier, “When all else fails, just try writing“.