There’s a recipe for writer’s block (for any creative-block, really). Even a sprinkle, a dash, or a spoonful of any of these ingredients is disastrous for your creativity.
The judgmental voice in your head
You know the one (that bastard). Every time you do a single thing, you hear him (or her) in your head, “this isn’t right” or “this is cliché.” Mine is quite rude and will just plainly tell me “this is crap.” Sometimes she even says, “this isn’t as good as the other stuff you wrote that one time when you were better at this. Who do you think you are, a writer?”
The unknown *shrieks in horror*
I don’t know what the WHOLE thing looks like, so I can’t move forward. I just can’t ‘cause I don’t KNOW.
The four-steps ahead
It can go in so many ways but if I go this way then the other thing I was thinking can’t happen and so I won’t let it go that way and if it goes this other way then the beginning can’t work and then if I do this….
Shut up, shut up, shut up!
The more practice you have in creative work, the more you will learn to shut up and trust yourself. And that’s all there is to it. Trust the creative process and you will be able to trust yourself. If the story is going somewhere you didn’t plan for it to go – it’s OK – it’s magical actually. If that design concept suddenly took a weird turn, follow it to see where it goes. If you suddenly add a steel drum to an oriental piece of music, JUST GO WITH IT. Don’t be afraid. The worst that could happen is you LEARN something about your project, which means you learn something about yourself and we will love it.
It’s easier said than done, and the only way to do it is to practice. Knowing and recognizing these ingredients will help you battle them.
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