Blank Page, Blank Mind
Blogger: Wendy Lawton
Tuesday. It’s my turn to blog. Tuesday comes around every week. A few hours ago, our esteemed leader, Janet, asked me what I was going to blog about. I had to answer, “I don’t know.”
I sat down to watch last night’s episode of Downton Abbey and I briefly thought about writing about the power of story but I’m way too depressed. <Sniff>
Last fall I attended a workshop given by Kristen Billerbeck, Christa Allen and Jenny B. Jones on how to get unstuck. One of the tricks was to write eight to ten minutes by hand without letting the pen leave the paper. It doesn’t matter what you write. If you are a novelist, you can journal as one of your characters or write a letter to your character. If you are writing nonfiction, simply journal your frustration. The rules: Don’t think. Don’t lift your pen. Set the timer. We tried it and it worked. Unfortunately it didn’t work for me as I sit here staring at a blank screen.
Another trick I’ve heard is start typing gibberish. Use the old typewriter exercises and as your fingers move, your brain may unlock and begin to type ideas that have some value. Tonight, my gibberish yielded not one jot of inspiration.
As I searched for a helpful subject I found myself wishing I had some of you on speed dial. I kept thinking I’d love to get some hints about what the writers in our blog community do to overcome that dreaded blank page.
I don’t have you on speed dial, but rather than write a blog post today, let me lean on you to write it for me. What do you do when inspiration is thin? How do you come up with a compelling subject? Do you have some tricks you’d be willing to share that never fail to get your brain going?