5 Simple Practices to Eliminate Writer’s Block and Attract Creative Ideas

Today’s post is by Mukesh Mani.

How wonderful it feels to be in that zone, where you are totally lost in your writing; ideas flowing effortlessly, writing without a break for a good few hours. Nothing can replace that feeling for a writer. It’s like driving a car in top gear on a buttery smooth road with no traffic.

But not every day is the same, and sometimes we are faced with moments of extreme frustration when ideas just won’t flow, sentences stop midway, and there is a whole lot of backspacing and deleting to the point where we even start doubting our skills as a writer!

All of these non-flowy, stop-and-go traffic moments can be summed up into two words: writer’s block.  And it has spared none; from world-renowned writers to absolute beginners, everyone has experienced it.

Stress, anxiety, self-doubt, fear, distractions, an uninspiring subject, and pressure of a deadline are some of the many factors that can give rise to these non-flowy moments. Continue Reading…

A Look at Masterful Character Description Part 2

Let me begin this week’s post, a continuation of looking at masterful character description, by lifting this paragraph from last week’s post:

Description is more than what the eye sees. It involves making judgments, coming to conclusions, forming impressions. Since our descriptions must be filtered through our POV character’s mind and heart, instead of thinking of description as a laundry list of items (hair color, eye color, shoe brand), they should reveal just as much, if not more, about our POV character as the person (or place or animal or food—anything) being described.

I repeat this to be emphatic about the importance of taking the time to both know your characters thoroughly as well utilizing description powerfully and deliberately.

In other words, don’t waste space or your reader’s precious time by writing ineffective description. Make it count. Make it evocative. Make it fresh and revealing. Continue Reading…

A Look at Masterful Character Description

We began this series on masterful writing last week by taking a look at James Lee Burke’s wonderful character descriptions. All too often writers—beginning and seasoned—skimp on description. Or if they do manage a few lines, they’re uninspired, boring, or laden with stereotype. Good writing—masterful writing—takes hard work.

But it’s not just effort that’s involved. More than effort is needed to craft masterful description. Description is more than what the eye sees. It involves making judgments, coming to conclusions, forming impressions. Since our descriptions must be filtered through our POV character’s mind and heart, instead of thinking of description as a laundry list of items (hair color, eye color, shoe brand), they should reveal just as much, if not more, about our POV character as the person (or place or animal or food—anything) being described.

Think how differently you might approach describing a character who walks into a room if you focused more on the one witnessing than the one being described.

I mentioned in the last post that you must truly know your characters through and through. You must create deep, rich, complex characters full of experience, opinions, tastes, beliefs, sensibilities, prejudices, wounds, knowledge, and so much more. If you don’t, you can’t mine deeply into description fully in POV. Continue Reading…

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