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How Best Selling Authors Beat Writers Block

By John Reese, Jun 11 2018 04:33PM

How Best Selling Authors Best Writers Block

As Russian-American novelist, philosopher, playwright and screenwriter Ayn Rand once said, “A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others.” It‘s an interesting thought and solicits much by the way of reflection. Creativity is a mindset and a way of processing the world but what happens when the creative juices stop flowing and how do authors avoid the dreaded writers block to ensure their prose remain original meaningful and above all delight their readers?

Writing a novel is no small undertaking. Nurturing and growing a story till it becomes a fully-fledged novel is a journey on which many established and budding authors find themselves faltering as their creative leanings wax and wane, but with a little forethought it needn’t be the case. Our top three tips are taken from our author benchmark surveys and with a survey pool of over 5000 authors you can be sure they will work for you.

1. Step back and think of something else.

We said it before but it’s a point that needs repeating. Writing a novel is no small undertaking. Think of it as a giant jigsaw that your mind needs to piece together. Sometimes it feels like your thoughts are caught in the midst of a maelstrom and you can’t think straight let alone combine exciting plot threads in surprising ways. No one can write a novel in one sitting. It’s a journey that starts with one page followed by another. Sometimes you just need to stop, take a step back and do something different. Many authors feel guilty at the thought of doing this because they feel unproductive. This isn’t the case. Once an idea for a novel has taken shape the creative mind works on multiple levels of consciousness. Step away and let your subconscious do the work and you will find creativity begin to flourish.

2. Loosen up!

We don’t mean stretch a little or undo a few buttons. Being creative is at its best a spontaneous manifestation of our thoughts. We can schedule our day, put aside time to write, but creativity needs time and space to grow. Some authors favour a set time to write each day, others are more flexible but whatever your approach you need to clear your mind. Today’s evolving publishing landscape means indie authors in particular have to wear many hats and with so many demands competing for their attention it can be both stressful and distracting. Automating as many tasks as you can and becoming proficient in the software you use will negate a lot of that stress. Allowing your mind to more readily wander and the ideas to flow.

3 Crib a little

There is no such thing as an original idea. Yes, there may be some authors jumping up and down with indignation on reading this but with several million authors on the planet at any one time the odds are against a single original idea for a book. It is simply down to who brings it to fruition and who lets it drift on by. Ideas are simply an evolution of stimuli and thought and for the vast majority of authors it’s their love of reading that leads them to write a book of their own and it’s the influence of favoured authors that on a subliminal level feeds the creative mind. When writers block strikes, clear the decks and pick up a good book in the genre in which you write. Let’s be clear and say ‘cribbing a little’ doesn’t mean stealing ideas. We simply mean allowing the influence of the writers you’ve come to love to nourish and nurture your thoughts.

So there you have it. Succinct and informed by the thoughts of over 5000 authors who contribute towards our publishing benchmark surveys. When faced with writer's block step back, loosen up and crib a little and those creative juices will soon start flowing again.

It doesn’t matter what genre you write in these tips will work for you but we’d like to take a moment or two to focus on science fiction. It's a genre we will expand on in a new blog post but needless to say, there are those novels that are true to the classics which permit the 'suspension of disbelief' necessary to enjoy the genre to its fullest and there is the more generic improbable melodrama which is little more than pulp fiction. The tips in this blog post not only help beat writer's block they will also help you take your writing to a higher level and at Bookviral we’ve been honoured to review the very best. Springing readily to mind is K K Edin’s debut novel The Measurements Of Decay. Highly recommended you can catch our review on the link HERE.

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