It’s inevitable, really.
You get your writing routine down. You’re writing strong for days, weeks, months. Then something happens.
You take a day off. Then two. And before you know it, you’re cringing every time you see your keyboard or your dusty pen. And you find yourself unsure how to break back into your WIP.
That’s when the self-destructive questions start. Do I have what it takes anymore? What if I forgot everything about writing since the last time I wrote?
Don’t worry. You’ve still got it! You just need a little psychological trick to access your writer self again.
Because, seriously, you’re not the only person in the world to take a writing break. Wether you write fiction, technical manuals, or blog posts everyone needs a break. Because even if you’ve got your writing routine down pat, you’re going to want a vacation once in awhile.
So of course there’s a way back in.
And how exactly do you get back into writing after the lapse?
That’s what a reader asked me recently. She found herself at the end of a long summer, without a single word written.
This is what I told her.
Reader Question: How Do I Get Back into Writing after a Long Break?
This is a great question and something every writer deals with.
My tip to overcome a writing hiatus that makes you feel stuck is to write a journal entry.
Talk about anything at all. Write about a writing tip you heard recently and in what way you plan to use it in your story. Write about the room you’re sitting in. What it looks and smells and sounds like. Write about the writing skills you’re practicing now. Or how frustrating writers block can be.
Still struggling? Write the same word over an over again like author, Maya Angelou does.
What I try to do is write. I may write for two weeks ‘the cat sat on the mat, that is that, not a rat,’…. And it might be just the most boring and awful stuff. But I try. When I’m writing, I write. And then it’s as if the muse is convinced that I’m serious and says, ‘Okay. Okay. I’ll come. – Maya Angelou
It won’t be long before you’re mind feels limbered up again and you start to feel that old excitement. If it takes longer than you thought it would and you start to worry that this will never pass, take a break. Then write another journal entry the next day. Eventually it will come back to you.
And like author, Louis L’amour said:
Start writing, no matter what. The water doesn’t flow until the faucet is turned on.
Even if the writing sucks.
Try this out. Because when you overcome the hiatus-induced block this time, you’ll know for the rest of your life that you have what it takes to keep writing.