silent exploding creatures of Minecraft.
When it hits, you know. It usually entails you staring at the screen (or paper) for hours, watching that blinking cursor. You try to tackle it from different angles at first. Writing on the ceiling, jumping on the bed, and trying to find inspiration in the crumbs on your plate. The worst part is how nasty it can get if you focus way too hard on the fact that it's happening.
So, when it does happen to find you and infect you with un-creative-itis, how do you handle it? What do you do to stop it from overflowing to the point where you're pulling your hair out? How do you keep it from killing every ounce of inspiration you have left?
When I first started my second journey into writing land, I used to worry that stepping away from writing for a day would make me lose my ability. Crazy right? It's pretty insane to think that one or two days of not writing would completely kill my skill. I used to think that a block was there for the sole purpose to act as a warning to not step away. If only writers could sit and pump out words without the need for other activities and continue to keep the same exact amount of productivity like some kind of starving mouse on a wheel. If that were possible, a writer could churn out novel upon novel every month. Come to think of it, that sounds incredibly strange and I'm not sure I could live off a diet of cheese.
Luckily, there is more than one way to tackle it and forget it even exists. Many writers cover this on their blogs and I think that there is more than one way. Here's a small rundown of the activities I choose to do. If it helps you, great! If not, I hope you find your way and aren't lost in the Dark Cave of Blockula forever.
One way that I like to deal is to write something random for ten minutes every morning. I will use a random writing prompt and go at it. Sometimes it's cathartic and I can even sporadically go from the original prompt to something completely different. This keeps me from getting bored of the usual grind that I have a tendency of gripping on to.
I will also soak up some media by watching a movie, listening to music, or (my favorite) playing a video game. I've been inspired in more than one way just by doing all of these activities for a day or two. Making free time for yourself is not something you should feel guilty doing. Having a clear head will always prevail when going up against that monster in the room that steals your pen.
Another way I cope is to exercise or stretch at least once every other day. I know this might sound like a strange way to cope but in all honesty, it works! Hunching over my keyboard and lamenting actually hinders me. I'm not sure if something like this will help you but trying to get in shape pumps me up. It makes me feel more confident and less slouchy. The body and mind are connected in more than one way. If you start feeling cruddy while writing, try going for a walk or attempting a yoga pose (carefully of course). Something like this might just kick those creative gears into action.
Last, but not least, I focus on my life. Simply stepping away from the craft to spend time with those you care about is a great thing. It doesn't mean that you're stopping for good. It doesn't mean that you won't come back. It just means one simple thing: you need a break. Yes, writing is important. Yes, being creative is important. But paying attention to yourself is very important. Listen to your mind and your body. It's not bad to rest and have fun doing something different for a day, just make sure to come back, okay? Have a great (and productive) week.