You have a blog and you have an ezine. You know you need to post to your blog and communicate with your email list regularly. But what happens when nothing comes to mind? That happened to me just this week.
I normally get my Tuesday ezine article/blog post to my assistant on Fridays so that she can set it up in Aweber and post it to my blog for Tuesday morning distribution. I sat at my desk all day Friday, thinking in the back of my mind, “I need to write my article.” Friday night came and nothing was written. I thought about it Saturday, but still nothing. I’ll admit it…Sunday came and I had horseback riding on my mind and my article was nowhere on my radar.
Then here comes Monday, which was full of client calls and work that needed to be done. I have that nagging, impending deadline fast approaching — and still no idea what to write. Well, not really no idea. I was having ideas but nothing was resonating with me. I also have a list of article ideas that I write down as they come to me so I can refer to them later, and none of those were really calling my name either. I asked team members for ideas…still nothing. I read through some ezines from other folks that were in my inbox. I listened to part of a recorded teleseminar. Still nothing.
What did I do? I baked cinnamon rolls, ate some, and then walked 2 miles. My health/nutrition coach would not be very happy with me about the eaten cinnamon rolls, but I walked 2 miles to make up for it, so maybe she won’t get on me too bad on our weekly call tonight! One of my goals for 2012? To lose weight, eat healthier and be more fit.
But what does all this have to do with anything? Writer’s block! It happens to a lot of us, including just the fear of writer’s block. “If I start a blog (or ezine) I’ll be committed to write weekly (or monthly) and what happens if I can’t think of anything to write?” If you don’t normally write, there are some things you can do. You can hire a copywriter (Gulf Coast Office Support does copywriting, as well as copyediting). Or you can purchase PLR articles. PLR stands for private label rights, and there are tons of articles written on a variety of subjects. The writers of these PLR articles sell a limited quantity (usually) to people who can then use them exactly as is or modify them for their own use.
If you really enjoy writing your own articles (like I do) and just really have the occasional writer’s block, what are some strategies you can use to get past that block?
- Carry a notepad with you so those great ideas you get while sitting at a red light can be written down for later when you need them! You might think it’s such a great idea you’ll remember it, but the time will come when you sit down at your computer to write and you’ve forgotten.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself. Don’t look for perfection or take yourself too seriously. The American poet William Stafford once said, “There is no such thing as writer’s block for writers whose standards are low enough.” Does this mean he wanted low quality writings? No, it means to start somewhere. Don’t try to make the first draft the greatest article written!
- Just start writing, even if it’s just random thoughts and words about how you can’t come up with anything to write or how the dogs are barking at someone walking down the road. Just write!
- Get up and do some physical exercise. Take a brisk walk, go to the gym, and get that blood pumping (but take your pen and paper in case an idea comes to you).
- Create a schedule and a deadline. While I missed my first deadline (Friday), I did not miss my absolute-must-have-it-done deadline (Tuesday).
Do you have any other ideas for getting past writer’s block? Please share them!