Writer’s block is a real problem for anyone who writes. It’s just impossible to be creative 100% of the time. It can feel awful, defeating, frustrating, and absolutely maddening. And oh by the way, it doesn’t just happen to authors. It also happens to music writers, bloggers, marketers, and just about any profession that depends on both writing and creativity.

If you’ve never had writer’s block, or at least haven’t had it yet, count yourself lucky.  I recently came across a video that encapsulates what it feels like to get writer’s block.

So we all know you’re going to get writer’s block at some point. How do you deal with it? Here are some tips and tricks that have helped me deal with writer’s block over the years.

Create a Writing Routine

I know this sounds really counterintuitive and like something that would kill creativity, rather than foster it, but having a regular writing routine is really important. The idea is that you get used to writing a little bit (or a lot) every day, rather than waiting to write when you feel creative.

You can’t sit around and wait for a creative spurt or you’ll never get any writing done at all.

Plus creating a writing routine for yourself actually trains you to write when you aren’t feeling as creative. Psychologists say that training yourself this way actually leads to fewer incidents of writer’s block.

Block All Distractions

Can you ever block ALL distractions? I know I can’t, but it’s important to block as many as you can when you sit down to write. If you’re popping over to TikTok every few minutes, looking at that sink of dishes or pile of laundry, or playing with the cat, you’re not going to get anything done.

For me personally, I have to mentally block myself from doing all the millions of other things that grab my attention, and just focus on my story. Once I can get myself in a groove, then the writing comes. In my experience, my worst writer’s block happens when I can’t find my focus from the start. Distractions turn my writing to crap and pretty soon I hate what I’ve written and don’t know where I want to go from there.

Work on Another Scene

Whenever I get stuck on a particular section of my WIP, I just move on to another scene. As a matter of fact, I don’t always write chronologically, so it makes it easy to move to something else when I’m creatively blocked.

If you’re one of those people that strictly writes in chronological order, consider taking a break to do some details on your plot outline or work on something else. When you take a break on your current WIP and work on something else, it often means that you can come back to it with new energy.

Change Up Your Writing Location

Moving to a new location to do your writing can be just the ticket to get you back in the groove.  If you usually write at a desk, consider the kitchen table, the floor, or even write from your bed.  If that won’t do it, try going to a coffeeshop, park, or a library. No one ever said that you always have to write in the exact same place every day.

Take a Short Break

One of the best ways to break through writer’s block is to take a short break. For me, I might take a break to load the dishwasher, take a 10 minute walk, chat with a friend, or even just stare out the window for a little bit (brain churning of course). In my case, that short break is enough to let me break through the creativity barrier and get back at it.

What does not work for me in the break category is to get on social media. Once I start, I’ll end up wasting an hour. I usually just need a mindless distraction to break my own writer’s block.

Take a Long Break

There are some days when writing just ain’t happening. That’s ok. When I’ve tried all my usual tricks and nothing is working, I’ll just take the pressure off myself and do something else altogether.  Going to the gym is a big one for me, but it could be just about anything.

Sometimes after walking away for a few hours, my writer’s block is gone and I’m raring to go. Other times, I’ll just close the old laptop and call it a day. It doesn’t happen to me often, but it does happen.  Forcing myself to write, trying freewriting, or a million other things that supposedly work for other authors just doesn’t work for me.

Forcing myself through writer’s block just means I write crap and have to scrap it all anyway, so why bother? I’d rather just start fresh tomorrow.