Writers Block with Snake Dancing
Judy Cullins, M.A.
Writers block! Even columnist Dave Berry has it. He
admits that at least 30 times a day when writing his
humor column, he gets up from his computer to sip his
Pepsi and to divert his attention when he can't think of
what to write. Recently, he reached for the cola and
instead found a coiled snake. He tried barbecue tongs to
carry it away, but when it landed in his pool, he kept
the dance going trying to catch the thing.
As a writer you may think you are blocked because you
think your book may not be significant enough, you don't
know how to format it, or since you aren't famous, your
book won't sell. Or, like Dave you can't think of
something great to say.
Let the book coach encourage you beyond your doubts. Know
that your book is unique and offers useful solutions to
help your audience solve their challenge or problem. You
don't have to write like others, and yes, you can write a
is Writer's Block?
To me it's just that I'm distracted and don't seem
organized enough with what's important to write for my
particular audience. It's a signal that my brain won't
focus temporarily. Like Dave Berry, I need a break.
To some of you, it's like stepping off a cliff and
plunging into the abyss. You don't have all the answers
to start, so it becomes overwhelming to even put words to
do we have Writer's Block?
have too many ideas/ choices.
We need to focus on one thing at a time. Write down 3-4
topics you are passionate about. Take some deep breaths,
and let the #1 come forth. Write on one book primarily,
and just put new ideas into the others' folder. Stay with
your #1 book until you finish it. When we don't finish a
project, we feel guilty--and hence more stuck!
Really, "False Evidence Appearing Real." Our
performance anxiety keeps us from taking that next step.However,
we can get direction and skills from a how-to book on
writing or a qualified book coach if we are willing.
don't have enough information to move forward to write a
clear, compelling book.
we aren't sure of how to publish our book. Or, we don't
know how to put a chapter together. Book writing
information is easily available from the Internet. Do a
search on "book coaching" and find helpful
seems an enormous task in time and money.
What most emerging authors don't realize is that they
don't have to write the "end all, be all" book.
Just choose one focus such as solving one problem or
writing for only one preferred audience per book.
Targeted audiences are much easier to sell to.
to Get Unstuck.
1. Warm up! Writers
need to relax, get into alpha state each time before they
write. So take deep belly breaths for 1-2 minutes first.
Another way to set up your book writing success is to
listen to relaxing music before you set out to write. You
may even warm up by handwriting something before you
commit it to your computer.
2. Got the blank page
blues? Write a little the day beforethen you have a
partial page to hook new related, information onto. I
wrote this article in two sittings because I didn't like
my old introduction.
Switch tasks, but honor a time set aside for
writing each day. If you are stuck in #1 book, add
research stories, or how to's to the #2 book. If stuck on
one chapter, start or work on another one.
4. Organize your
book, both on your computer and in paper files. For your
book, name it and save as the main folder. Add new files
to this folder such as
- the introduction
- Chapter One and the rest
- Table of Contents with Chapter Titles
- The back cover, sales letter, or 30-60 Second Tell and
Sell (sales message).
5. Start a promotion
folder too. Name one folder "traditional" and
another one "online." Start adding files of
promotion information as it comes to you.
Then, when your book is almost finished, you'll have your
promotion foundation ready to hit the ground running for
fast, continuous sales that keep your cash flow going.
Love your topic. When you have passion for
your book, you won't have many blocks. You'll be excited
to sit down and spend special time each week on it. You
may want to work daily like I do. When you do one "high
level" activity a day on your book, you will finish
before you know it and you will feel exhilarated and
satisfied at your results.
Remember a page a day yields 365 pages a year. Think
about a shorter book of only 25-50 pages you can deliver
as an eBook or print book. You can finish one in less
than a month!
2003 Judy Cullins. All Rights Reserved
Judy Cullins: 20-year author, publisher, book coach.
Helps entrepreneurs manifest their book and web dreams.
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