Day 42 – And a Hot Tip from Lynda Barry for When You Feel a Little Stuck

Posted Feb 20 2019, 12:16 am

If you’ve ever done NaNoWriMo, you know that one of the most awesome parts is the pep talks you get from established writers.  Here’s a brief excerpt from one Lynda Barry (one of my personal favorite creative souls) contributed to NaNo 2009, on how to get unstuck when the words just aren’t flowing.  It’s a simple trick, but a powerful one:

“When writing by hand, when the story dries up temporarily—as it always does, try keeping your pen in motion anyway by writing the alphabet a b c d e f g in the middle of the sentence a b c d e f g h i j k until the sentence rolls forward again on its own. Just keep your pen steadily rolling along through time, for a good time.”

Lynda’s a huge fan of writing by hand, and if you want to know why, check out the whole pep talk here.  But even if you’re on a word-processor, you can get a similar effect by typing “the quick brown fox” a few times until the words start moving again.  Just keep those fingers in motion.

Or try turning down the brightness on your monitor until you can barely see the screen; that can be a great way to short-circuit your inner editor for awhile.

Good luck with the writing today! May it flow!

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