Fighting Writer’s Block

I have two strategies for fighting writer’s block when mid-WIP.

1. Chapter Outlines:  I am a flexible plotter.  I start writing with a plot mapped out, but it almost always changes as I write, and I expect it to.  However, plotting (even as I go) helps keep me focused on reaching the end.  I always have a notebook even though I do most of my writing in the computer first.  In that notebook, I write down all the chapters I have left and what should happen in each chapter.  When I’m stuck, I start from where I am and rewrite those outlines.  Usually, it’s different each time I write it because I’ve changed things around since the last time I got stuck.

Example from WIP:

Chapter Five:  picnic, call from FBI, end things (“You know it isn’t right.” “Yeah” Kiss.  “Sure?”  “Bye”)

Chapter Six:  Callie’s pissy, beginning of Fly-In, upset about Fred, comfort.  (“I hope you don’t think I was trying to… take advantage of you.”  She laughed, couldn’t help but.  “Trevor, I would never, ever think that of you.”

Snippets of dialogue are always popping up, so I always try to jot them down in the chapter along with a rough outline of events.  Depending on the story and where I am there might be more or less detail in each chapter description.

2. Reread:  This can be dangerous ground, because depending how much you have written it can take up a lot of valuable time.  If you get stuck a lot too, you can’t keep rereading.  However, if I really LIKE my story, my characters, a reread usually helps remind me where I’m going, inspires me to keep going.  It gets me back in that place (usually) where I can jump right back into it.  It gets me all excited all over again and I’m ready to dive back in.

Also, there’s trolling the internet.  That usually doesn’t help my writer’s block, it just proves as a procrastinating diversion.

What do you do to beat writer’s block?

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