As writers, we often dream of a life where we rise in a sun-filled room, stretch, sip coffee, slip into our favorite chair to begin writing our future bestselling novel, rest our fingers on our keyboard and smile at the rapid beat of our words as they come pouring out of our imagination to build a new, intoxicating world.
If you’re anything like me, and I’d guess most writers are, reality hits you hard whenever you wake in that said sun-filled room, perform the whole stretch and coffee thing and realize your fingers have nothing to type because your mind sits blank behind glossed over eyes.
A deep fear that you’ve lost your writing mojo sets in. All those ideas that came to you over the weeks that prefaced that moment, have splattered into a heap of nothingness. Where did all the snappy dialogue and plot twists go? Poof. Gone. Just like that as soon as you sat in front of that blank computer screen.
It happens to many writers all.
Here are 5 ways to get your writing mojo back:
Be a fly on the wall.
Imagine you’re lead character is having a conversation with someone she cares deeply about. What would that conversation look like? How would she be reacting? What would be the vibe? Would she be having an argument, indulging in friendly debate, confessing something, or trying to make someone feel better?
Get into your character’s head.
Imagine your lead character sitting on a comfy chair, glass of wine in one hand, a pen in the other as she writes in her journal. What is she writing about? What happened in her day that made her smile, made her mad, confused her, or enticed her? Is she hard on herself? Or perhaps she’s in denial over something?
Indulge your senses.
Take a walk, sit in a room, dance, cook, do something that puts you in a scene in your book. What does the smell remind you of? Is it bright, dark, peaceful or chaotic? If you could taste the setting, how would you describe it? What does the air feel like? Is it exotically moist, delicate, or frenzied?
Use a writing prompt.
Open up a magazine, newspaper, or favorite book, and pick a random sentence. Imagine your character is at the tail end of that sentence. What happens next? Using a writing prompt can get us unstuck and out of our writer heads and into character mode.
Ask the important question.
Stare your character down in your mind and ask her, “What if XYZ happened to you instead?” See where she takes you with her answer. This is a great way to give life to dull scenes and dragging plot lines. Nothing adds a spark like tossing in a curve and seeing how one might react to it. Keep your character guessing, and your readers will be just as hooked to see what happens next.