It is disputed whether this insidious condition exists at all. We have all experienced moments when the writing muscle appears to have gone on holiday and we must all have felt our writing is not up to scratch at times. Is a short break from writing considered to be ‘writer’s block’? Often writers torture themselves if they do not reach certain word count targets each day and feel they have failed. Some people say just write anything, whatever comes into your head. It can be thrown away, just as long as you write. Surely it’s better to have written something rather than nothing.
So what really stops us from writing? For Ruth it’s the thought of not being able to write something that satisfies her because it won’t be good enough. One solution is to write, but when you come to a difficult word, phrase or idea, leave it and come back later. Ruth often leaves a blank space for Mary to come up with the ideal word, sentence or paragraph. So the barrier is removed and the rest of the writing can flow. Frequently a fresh look solves the problem. But we always try to remember, ‘The best way to get something done is to begin’.
Mary nearly always finds it difficult to start writing because she knows that what comes out on the screen in front of her will not be what was in her head when she thought of the story. However, if something has a plan to it, it's much easier. It's important to remember that 'writing' isn't just about putting sentences and paragraphs together, it can also involve a development stage in which ideas are noted and then put into some sort of order.
Facing a blank page can be very off-putting. Therefore rather than finish a day’s work at the end of a chapter or scene, why not stop while ideas are flowing and make a note of them. This can make it easier to start the next day.
A change of environment can help too. For example if you usually sit at a computer, why not take a notebook out into the garden if it’s a lovely day and be inspired by your surroundings. Or, as has been said on this blogspot before, go to a coffee shop. Being close to people can be stimulating. Rest assured, writer’s block is a temporary blip which every writer experiences.