Saturday, August 23, 2014

When Ideas Won't Come

by June Shaw

What do you do if you're an author, and ideas won't come?

For about the two thousandth time, I am about to find out.

Normally when I don't know what words to type on the page it's because I'm at a place in the plot of a novel where something important and unexpected needs to happen. When that occurs, I often sit back, look at what I'd written thus far, and consider what twist might pull the reader along so that he or she won't close the book.

That's not what's happening now. Right now I'm setting my fingers on my laptop keys and creating one word after another, but I need to admit -- I'm not sure where I'm going with this.

I'll blame it on others. Twice within the past week I needed to create blogs for other people (of course I could have done them sooner, but -- I digress.) Possibly I could start thinking of something clever to write in our group blog here like so many of the other authors do. I could set lots of attractive pictures in my posts (if I could figure out how to do that.)

I write a quarterly column for our area's Chamber of Commerce. The same thing happens there. Ideas come at the last minute. I'm not sure who I'll write about until the editor shoots me a reminder that my column is due in a few days.

I don't put off writing on a work-in-progress almost every day. My routine is set: rise whenever I wake up, read my Daily Word and say quick prayers, grab my coffee and get to the computer. Of course my fiction might increase faster if the Internet wasn't connected.

So what do you keep writing about? And how do you do it on time? I'd love to know how others keep up with all of the things they're trying to write.



Bill Kirton said...

I'm maybe fooling myself, June, but I rely on some inner 'thing' (don't ask me to define or refine it further) which eventually kicks in and says 'Stop procrastinating, make this a priority'. I then remember the importance of saying 'No' to requests, stop myself clicking idly on YouTube and Facebook links and force myself to write a few paragraphs. So far it's worked and that enforced activity gets me back into the book and the pleasure of being with its characters. Then the words keep coming (until the next little gap).

June Shaw said...

Ah, Bill, I hadn't thought about getting on YouTube:)

"Make this a priority" is probably one of the best pieces of advice I've heard. Thanks!