Every writer faces dry times, when the words just won’t flow. That blank page (or screen) can seem like an insurmountable barrier, especially when moving from one project to the next.
For months–years for some of us–we’ve held our characters firmly in our minds, spilling their stories out onto hundreds of heartfelt pages. When we finally reach “the end”, satisfaction pours over us. We’ve made it! Now what?
If you’re like me, the thought of starting a new novel venture both excites and overwhelms me. Writing a three-hundred page novel can seem a daunting task. There are new characters to develop. New plots. New settings. And if you’re a Historical writer like me, new time periods and surroundings to research.
So lets look at some simple ways to make transitioning from one project to the next a bit easier. Following are some suggestions to stir those creative juices just waiting to be released.
Give yourself a break. On completion of a project, give yourself a few days to relax and rejuvenate. Writing is both invigorating and exhausting work. Spend some off time doing something you enjoy. You’ll find yourself more ready to start again, once you’re refreshed and eager to get back to work.
Brainstorm with other writers. One of the best designs of God, is that He made us all different. Group activity fuels creativity. Find a few trusted writer friends, whether it be your critique partners or a writing group, and share your inspirations. Mix and match ideas, then weave the best ones into a storyline. No telling what great works will come of these pooled thoughts.
Eavesdrop. Now, this is not to say we should be seeking out gossip or infringing on others’ privacy. But if you should happen to overhear an interesting conversation, listen with your creative mind’s eye. Some tidbit of information may just spark an idea for a story question or plot. Put your creative energies to work by fictionalizing reality.
Utilize spin-off Characters. You’ve spent so much time getting to know your characters, you don’t want to sweep them aside, never to be thought of again. No one says you have to. I love when a character from one book or series makes an appearance in another. It’s like revisiting an old friend. That’s the fun of fiction writing–having the chance to create and touch the hearts of readers.
If you’re facing a blank page, I hope these suggestions have fueled new ideas to try. Or perhaps you have another way to get one’s creativity flowing. If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest.”
What helps get your creativity flowing? I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas!
Read how God works in the lives of Cynthia’s characters in her debut novel, UNDER THIS SAME SKY, available in both e-book and print at Amazon.com