Tips for writer's block?

So, I’ve been writing a fantasy fetish series and recently I’ve had some trouble finding the motivation to write out the scenes of the story. It used to come a lot easier, but now I feel like I’ve been struggling with dialog, and generally the meat of the story between the major beats that I have planned out. I feel that my own scenarios are contrived, and my characters aren’t reacting in a way that fits with how I’ve written them in the past. Even when I get some writing done, I lose confidence in it and end up scrapping it and starting over. It’s honestly been pretty painful since I do want to make these stories, I’m just unable to get stuff on the paper, so to speak. I’m basically asking for advice on this situation and/or some tips to get over this block of mine.

Edit:

Here’s a link to my series in question, if anyone is curious:

nopnopenohome - Hobbyist, Writer | DeviantArt

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For myself personally you can’t really force this sort of thing. Being a creative is inherently really hard, and really taxing even when pen isn’t being put to paper. Trying to push through writer’s block not only leads to an inferior product, but ultimately leads to you getting more burnt out in the end. From what you’ve said, this sounds like what you’re going through.

My advice is to just take some time to chill and not think about it. Work on something else, or just enjoy something you like. Recently I’ve sort of had to do that, though it has been because of other mitigating circumstances. I already know it has done me a lot of good, however.

It will come out in a satisfying way eventually. As I said at the start you cannot force these sorts of things.

Good luck completing your stories!

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You definitely can’t force being creative. Youre either in the mood, or you’re not, and if you’re not then you almost certainly won’t be happy with anything you create at that point.

If you don’t have a deadline then simply take a break. With my own writing, i find that a lot of my best ideas come when im thinking/ doing something entirely unrelated.

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After some thought, I think I should follow your advice about not forcing things. I did that with the last story I published, and while I think it was a good story, I was disappointed with the final product. Maybe I should try something else in the meantime, like writing some one-offs or creating character bibles. That could give me some time and maybe it’ll be easier returning to it after a bit.

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Eh, I don’t have a deadline per say, but I did do a pole with several options for stories. The thing is, I was interested in the topic of one of the options when I did the pole, but I’ve since lost interest in writing that subject matter. I still feel like I need to deliver on that though, because I made a couple of posts saying I was working on it.

Well in my case I sometimes get hit with a bout of inspiration sometimes (heck I wrote a story in three hours after midnight as I couldn’t go to sleep with the idea in my head).

Creativity is difficult to find fuel for, more so if you’re trying to go after some specific goal. For me, I like to look around Deviantart or Pixiv to see what other people have made and see if I make something from that. Mind you it doesn’t always work, it just needs to hit right.

If you’re lacking in energy in writing (meaning your block could be burnout of sorts), then take a break from writing for a time. While you’re on break perhaps write out story ideas, or create a loose story concept but not putting anything to paper fully. So once you recharged yourself you can write earnestly.

Lastly, try to make sure you don’t have too many distractions or anything that could prevent you from flowing with the story. Unfortunately, I don’t have too much time for myself so I end up having to take repeated breaks and stop my writing as something personal goes on. That three-hour example I have above I wrote without zero distractions and in a certain mood, one that refused to allow me to sleep and that I fell into a deep sleep after finishing it.

Just take your time, unless I feel good about a story I don’t publish it. Heck I know too well making a whole story then deleting the entire thing because I felt it was lacking. It’s not a race, but a marathon to finish.

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I can certainly relate to a lot of your own experiences when it comes to the ups and downs of the creative process. It’s been kind of depressing going from publishing a good story every couple of weeks to being unable to produce anything I’m confident in for months. I write a bunch already because of my college courses, so maybe expecting to pump out a couple more pages for my own enjoyment isn’t something I can manage right now, even though I have done it in the past. A lot of my own work is done at night, since its often the only time of the day where I can do my own things without being interrupted, but that can backfire since I might be out of energy by then.

I’m really thankful for the advice, it’s nice to get an outside perspective on this instead of just mulling it over with myself. I think my main issue isn’t motivation, but rather energy. As I stated, I’ve been writing and scrapping things for a while, so I really haven’t given myself a chance to properly step back. I think I’ll take a break from the series for now, do some smaller projects, and come back to it when I have the opportunity and enthusiasm to do it properly, instead of forcing it.

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In my case, I find it helps to sort of make sure everything else is in order in my life? I used to struggle with being a creative even though I hadn’t wanted to do aught else literally my entire life. Couldn’t write consistently, never had the energy etc. Flash forward a few years, come to find out I have things like ADHD or benefit from having lots of notes to draw off.

Check in on yourself, make sure you’re healthy, you’re taken care of, etc. And then after that just write! Doesn’t have to be good, just has to exist. You can handle the part of making it good after it’s real.

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Oh! And addendum: Make sure you have actionable goals when you’re writing.

Like, don’t just say “I wanna write x amount of words today”, because while you can do it, if you don’t like it you’re gonna end up being more miffed than anything else. “Why did I even bother.”

When you set out to write during writer’s block it’s important to treat yourself with more empathy than you would naturally. Don’t guilt yourself for not doing it, or notw riting the way you want it to, cause when you take breaks afterward you’re gonna carry that feeling with yourself and not only spoil your leisure time, make the the attempt to get back into a groove even worse.

You wanna set clear goals, that mean something a little more to you.

“I will advance to This Scene, or this Plot Point, and I’ll fulfill this part of the story as a roughdraft, and then come back and do revisions, or try something different,” You wanna be satisfied by the tools and goals you set, not frustrated or stymied by them, so make sure they’re reasonable, y’know?

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Something I’ve found helpful when I’m writing out a story chronologically and get stuck on a particular scene or passage is to write out a summarized greentext version of what has to happen in that scene and just continuing on until I feel up to going back and writing it out fully later. Just don’t forget to add a bookmark or something to remind you that it needs to be fixed.

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It’s serendipity that this topic popped up as I had only last weekend discovered the creative writing podcast “Death of 1000 Cuts” by author & comic Tim Clare. If you’re not familiar with it, the main format is that amateur authors submit their first page of their work for him to critique and work improvements into the prose. Along with each episode he dispenses creative writing advice, and expands on many subjects and tackling various issues when it comes to writing.

It’s part creative workshop, part entertaining (and good-natured) roast. Delivered by a fiercely witty and charmingly self-effacing and earnest gent. There’s also tons of it to sink your teeth into. Why not take a punt and listen to an episode or two of the first season? If he doesn’t hook you then no biggie, but if he does? Well then you’re in for a delight in store, my friend!

Take it from me - someone who wanted to write a short story and got consumed with brain rot with it back in January, then had a bunch of shit happen during the year and never plucked up the courage and energy to reattempt it up until now thanks to this podcast - it might well work for you too.

Whilst I can’t promise a magic bullet for your troubles, taking your mind out of the situation to try new things might well be just the thing you need.

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Thanks for all of the advice, I think you’re right about having to be more empathetic to yourself when writing. I’ve been really frustrated with myself during while trying to write lately. In my head I’ll be like, “why am I having this much trouble? It was so easy a couple months ago!”, I think it’s easy to get mad at yourself during writer’s block. The thing with any creative process is that you’re never going to get things done at a steady pace.

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Also, I would like to say that I’m really grateful for how much feedback I’ve gotten. It’s nice to know that this kind of thing is common to go though, as well receive so many new perspectives on the matter.

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As a fetish fiction commissions writer, I go through this all the time. There are weeks where I have an absolute glut of ideas and can’t type them out fast enough. And other weeks? Nothing. No ideas, no consistency in my flow, and/or worse: no motivation.

Here’s my general advice that I’ve found works for me.

First, don’t be afraid to bookmark what you’re working on and jump to a different project. Sometimes you’re not coming up with ideas because you just aren’t interested in your current project, at least not at the moment. Some distance from it, and forcing your brain to think on other projects can inspire new ideas.

Second, join a writing community. I have a few writing communities I’m part of that offer weekly challenges, daily prompts, idea sharing, etc. This can really spark motivation!

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I agree with this. I’ve found that writing “greentext” style is especially helpful for getting ideas down on paper and hashing out rough outlines. That way I don’t get caught up in the common writer’s mistake of “editing while you work” since I’m just making bullet points.

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