What I Do When I Don’t Know What to Write

I just returned from a work+family road trip full of mini mishaps and adventures.  I’m behind on tasks, my inbox isn’t empty (which is like hell for me), I’ve come down with a cold, and I’m kind of grumpy.

But I have to write.  I have five writing projects now on my plate, plus my daily blog post.  I’m out of ideas.  And I love it.

I love it because I have learned what it means.  I know what it will do for me.  It will sharpen my mind, speed up my work, enhance my productivity, and overall make me feel like a badass who can do anything.  That’s what writing does for me and why I do it every day.  I know I can overcome this because I’ve done it before.

A little trick that helps me and came to my rescue today is the interview.  Ask other people to ask you questions and write in response to those.  It works wonders.

In fact, I was just asked to write a piece for a publication this morning (project #5) and I thought, “This is the worst time to be asked.  I’ve already got four other things to write and I’m not feeling it.”  I half punted.  I said if they really need me to give me some ideas.  I got an email response with three article ideas.  It worked.  Each one immediately filled my imagination to the point where the new challenge was writing just one article.

That also led indirectly to getting today’s blog post done.  Why not blog about this very process which has worked so many times to help me overcome creative blockage?

We all have tons of ideas floating around our brains.  The thing is, we’re not always the best equipped to extract them.  Sometimes we need someone else to tell us where to look.

If you get good enough you might eventually be able to pose good questions to yourself and not even need to reach out to a friend.

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