How to Write When You Don't Feel Like Writing

Taken from here.

You're participating in NaBloPoMo, which means you need to drag yourself to the computer whether you want to or not. I know that sitting down in front of the screen is hard, but I promise you, you'll feel better once you do it. It's like exercising: sometimes it hurts to pull on the shorts and sports bra, you sigh loudly as you drive to the gym, and you pretty much want to cry when you step onto the treadmill. But you feel so damn good when it's over that you can almost forget that you need to go through this again the next day. That's what writing is like sometimes. But here are some tips on how to make the writing time a little less painful.

The hardest part is getting started; once you're writing, you can usually keep it going for a full post. So what are some foolproof ways to start writing when you can't think of anything to write?

  • Pretend someone has asked you a question and start answering it. If you're really stuck, beg a friend to ask you a question and then answer it in a post.

  • Write a letter to yourself -- either you now, in the past, or in the future. What would you tell yourself?

  • Go to your bookshelf, pull down a random book, open to a random page, touch your finger blindly to a word -- now write a post about the first thing you thought of when you saw that word.

  • Read some writing advice, such as Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird. Then respond to that writing advice.

How do you get yourself started when you don't feel like sitting down to write?

Melissa writes Stirrup Queens and Lost and Found. Her novel about blogging is Life from Scratch.


Find Past Posts