Last week I hit a bit of a brick wall with the book I’m writing. I’ve realised that, rather ironically considering how much I enjoy travelling, I really don’t enjoy writing the ‘travel’ sections of stories – how characters A and B get to C. Something which you can in some circumstances simply skip altogether. However, when the story is one about a series of interlinked worlds, it seems rather important to describe those links. I just get rather impatient and can’t wait to get to the main story again … and that leads me to a bout of good old Writer’s Block.
However, I think I found a solution … or at least it did in my case! Two week’s (of unemployment!) in, and I’ve now hit 30,000 words. Obviously, their calibre is still to be decided, but they are words, on a page, and for that I’m proud/
In fact, it was actually words on a page which got me past the infamous Block, because I decided to change my approach to writing for a few days.
I write in Word documents. Each chapter is a simple Word document, and then sections are compiled as folders on my laptop. I spent my life writing on a computer screen. And so I mixed it up a bit. I printed out my chapters.
For a start, actually being able to physically touch the pages of my work reminded me of what I had achieved. 30,000 words is about 76 pages of print. That’s a pretty hefty weight in your palms … even more so if you print it out double-spaced (which is actually something I would recommend if you have a lot of editing to do!)
But also, seeing the writing in a different way – as printed pages, as opposed to a never-ending scrolling computer screen really helped me look at it in a fresh light. I ended up editing everything I had written, and being inspired enough to go straight to writing another three chapters.
So if you’re struggling with a writing hurdle of some kind – whether it’s a travel section of your novel, or just simply a scene that you still can’t get to sound quite right – why don’t you try looking at it in a different way? Print it out, type it up, or simply copy it out again … You never know what the results might be!