When I was in elementary school, my teachers from third to fifth grade, when it was time to take a test, would say:
“Eyes on your own paper.”
This piece of advice can be translated to writers. Your work, is your work. It is powered by your own imagination, your own talent and merit. Don’t short change what you are creating because you may be unsure about its outcome!
Don’t be discouraged if you haven’t worked like you wanted to this week. Writing has it’s own ebb and flow–it’s own demands. Each work you begin, each work you end will have its own personality. It’s own process as you embark on the journey to hew out the story from the landscape of your imagination.
It’s a process. Becoming the writer that you want to be is a process. Don’t be discouraged by the small starts. The longest novel is still written one letter at a time.
Stephen King said the scariest part is right before you begin.
The scary part sometimes is just starting. The picking out the idea, the topic, or person is scary. But allow me to be your lighthouse a moment. All those things–people, places and things—are yours to command! Your imagination is yours.
When you write, do so as if no one is looking at you, or watching. This is essential. If you write like someone is watching you, nothing of substance will come from you.
Write as if the world may never see it. From there? You will have the power, and certainty, to share with the world.
Everything that is easily visible is always seen at top of it. No one sees the width and depth of the ice, even close up.
The same thing goes with your WIP’s. No one sees how deep it all goes. No one sees the sleepless nights. The crippling self-doubt. The lack of support. The lack of time. The sacrifices of sleep, money and time you didn’t think you had! And most of all, the writing. The creating. The breaking through the walls, jumping the fences to complete the work.
No one sees the work. But they will always have something to say about what they see.
With any WIP, you may get to a point when it’s not necessarily a block, but a sticking point. I call this being stuck in the middle.
This happens when you get to a point in your work when you don’t know what will/should happen next. Again, it isn’t a block–it is portion of story/project where you are unsure where to go next.
A block is a stoppage of all creativity, not the uncertainty of where to go.
The best thing to so when you get stuck is to be unstuck. You become unstuck by walking away from the work. Stephen King said that ‘the story will reveal itself.’ This means you have to be patient. You have to be perceptive to inspiration, and any creative energy.
Like anything stuck, you have to be patient. And you have to have a strategy.