Writer’s Block: What to do When Your Mind Goes Blank

leonid_pasternak_-_the_passion_of_creationWriter’s block – it happens to the best of us. That dreaded moment where you have to put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard in most cases) and your mind goes completely blank. You can put words in front of one another to make sentences, but you’re not exactly sure what you’re trying to say or how to do it, so that backspace arrow quickly becomes your new best friend.

So, what do you do?

Well, as our content team spend hours and hours every working day scribing everything from travel blog updates to site copy for finance brokers, I thought they’d be the best people to ask. Here’s what they had to share:

Phil, Creative Content Manager, says:

phil

“The best way to beat writers block is to read.

“Look at what is out there in the ether – what are your competitors saying? Who’s getting people in a bit of a tizz today? What’s interesting to you about a specific article or brief? What’s the Merriam-Webster Word of the Day? (Today it’s myriad). What’s made Pitchfork’s Best New Songs?

“That or grab a coffee. Blessed caffeine works every time.”

Natasha, Creative Content Executive, says:

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“Don’t panic. You’re not a machine so you can’t expect yourself to be completely switched on all the time.

“Don’t beat yourself up about the blank Word document staring back at you. Instead, take some time out away from your computer. Grab a drink (tea is magical), go for a walk, eat something delicious and come back to your computer with a fresh head and hopefully, fresh ideas!”

Sophie, Junior Creative Content Executive, says:

soph

“For writer’s block, I would walk away, take my precious pug out and refuse to acknowledge the block-related anxiety.

“My unrelenting love and adoration of my pooch, Roy (right), would eventually calm my nerves and lead to some of the most hilarious phrasing ever known to man, or dog.”

Then there are my own personal top tips…

Steph, Creative Content Executive, says:

me

“Sometimes writer’s block is unavoidable, but instead of staring at a blank computer screen I take this as an opportunity to refresh. So, I go for a short walk to the kitchen and put the kettle on. I’ll then do one of three things (after I’ve ate my weight in biscuits):

1. A quick Google news search using autocomplete to see what people are searching for and what like-minded businesses are talking about.

2. Bug my colleagues until they agree to have a group content session with me so we can brainstorm and bounce ideas off one another.

3. Contact the client I am writing for and ask if there has been any company news or industry updates, or anything they’d particularly like us to cover.

“9 out of 10 times, one or more of these actions will create a plethora of content ideas which I can choose between.”

Let’s Have a Chat

Hopefully our team’s advice will give you that boost you need, but if you want to share your writing struggles, then tweet us your woes @LibertyOnlineUK – we’re here to feel your pain.

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