Every writer gets stuck with Writer’s block from time to time. Whether you are a college student, a blogger, a novelist or something in between, it happens eventually. We all lose our inspiration, but don’t fret. No matter how far you have fallen down the rabbit hole there is always a way out.
As a college student, I am always writing. Currently I am flipping back and forth between a research paper, a third person story and this blog post. Most days my journal doesn’t even see the light of day and i’m fresh out of ideas. So I have scoured the Internet (much like you are probably doing right now) looking for my inspiration and along the way have put together a system that has been very effective for me and may just help you too.
1. Keep a To-Do list
I keep a small notepad on my desk (I even have one in my backpack) that I refer to constantly. I either use it to keep an actual To-Do list of things I want to get done that day or I use it to quickly jot down ide
as while i’m doing work. I find it extremely helpful to be organized in some way. Having a physical list forces me to get the things I need to get done so I have more time to write, so try it. It’s a great habit to get into.
2. Log your dreams
I also keep a small notepad next to my bed. I dedicate this one to writing my dreams down before i forget them. This trick may not work for everyone but I personally have had some strange dreams thathave been the inepiration for a couple of stories. It also helped me get into the habit of writing every day just like my To-Do lists. If you are someone who does not dream often then you could use this notepad to organize your thoughts before you start your day. Who knows, maybe you’ll find that you prefer to write in the morning opposed to waiting until right before bed.
3. Keep notes on your phone
I am an iphone user so my notes app is always filled. When I am out and about and I get an idea or I hear something I like, I type it into my notes. Then when I’m writing I refer back to my endless list. I can almost always find something to add to a story or a paper. If you’re not very tech savvy then I suggest keeping a small notebook with you at all times. Inspiration strikes at random times and if you’re like me then you’ll forget it in about five minutes. Check out these note-taking apps from The Verge
When my body feels good so does my brain. Also, getting up from your desk and moving around gets your blood pumping and can help wake you up. If you don’t have time to hit the gym, Check out these workouts to do at your desk from The Washington Post.
5. Find the right writing prompt
When I don’t know what to write about I look for a prompt to get some ideas. You can find dozens of them online or you can find books full of them! One of my favorite prompt books is 642 Tiny Things To Write About, I found my copy at Urban Outfitters. The San Francisco Writer’s grotto also has a full sized version of these tiny prompts and 712 additional prompts. Click here to check out this tiny book of prompts from Urban Outfitters
I also have a personalized writing prompt that I set up on my own after finding the same prompts over and over( and over) again online. I love when my family and friends get involved in my writing and my writing processes, so one holiday I set up Jenga blocks and had everyone write their own prompt for me when I get stuck. I called them my Writer’s Blocks. Not only are they a creative spin on the term writer’s block, but they have actually proved very helpful. It motivates me more when I have a personal prompt.
By now, with each of these steps, you are hopefully beginning to see the light at the entrance to the rabbit hole you fell down earlier. Soon enough you’ll emerge with a new list of things to write about