If you’re like me, the excitement of a new story or beginning a challenge is waning. Now that you’re into the second week, maybe you're wondering where your next 2,000 words will come from.
Never fear, I have some suggestions. Thirteen, as a matter of fact.
- Have one of your main characters start a journal. What are her innermost thoughts/fears about her current plight?
- Write a back-story. Give yourself permission to compose a history for your heroes, villains and/or setting. Indulge in all those world-building details and trivia that might bore a reader, but as the creator you feel compelled to know. Getting them down on paper/electronically will enrich your story. A word of caution, though: Use these details sparingly in the final draft.
- Go through what you’ve written, but don’t edit. Envision the scene you're looking at, then add another layer. Insert Smells, Sights, Sounds and Tastes -- impressions and associations your character would encounter during his or her experience.
- Look at a previous scene and play the "What-If?" game. What would have happened if Character X hadn’t found the gun? Or what if Character X somehow had survived a fall into the volcano?
- Write a scene again from the antagonist’s point of view.
- Add a new character.
- Kill off someone in the story.
- Consider handing out super powers.
- Look at one of the scenes and consider changing its setting. What if Character X broke up with the villain while both (were swimming in shark infested waters), (attending another character’s funeral), (relaxing aboard the Titanic), (locked in the trunk of a car), (bored to tears at a family reunion), (facing the camera in a reality TV special), (immersed in a fire fight), (climbing to the top of Mount Everest), (being held by airport security). You get the idea. ...
- Make a list of each of your main characters’ dirty secrets. Then another list of the worst possible moments those secrets could be exposed. If inspiration hits, write that scene.
- Look at the things that have happened to your hero. Say he has unlimited text minutes. Compose his explanations of those events in texts to his (boss, mother, girlfriend, child, priest, parole officer).
- Remember you’re writing for fun. Not perfection. Keep telling yourself, “This is a Rough Draft. I can always change things later.”
- Treat yourself to a reward for words written.
Finally and possibly the best suggestion in my list, remember to ask friends and family for help. Phone someone or connect on twitter. Also, check out the forums on the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) website: http://www.nanowrimo.org, or visit another writer’s blog.
One of the things I love most about NaNoWriMo and blogging is sharing the writing adventure with others. Please consider leaving a suggestion for defeating writer’s block or a comment. Thanks.