When You’re Stuck In a Rut

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Don’t you just love how easy the words flow? It is like a constant stream of consciousness that flows in and out of your brain, and down into your fingertips. Somehow, from there, it ends up written on the page. It’s beautiful, it’s profound, and you’re so very proud of all you have accomplished in such a short span of time.

What is that?

Did I just hear you laugh? Was that a roll of the eyes I spotted?

Okay, yeah, I am going to level with you. I rarely ever feel that way anymore. Between my two kids, being pregnant with our third, and keeping our household from burning to the ground, writing has become more of a chore that takes a lot to accomplish on most days. Some days I feel like the idea of writing is like listening to nails on a chalkboard (you know you just cringed!). Other days I would love to be able to sit at the screen for longer than two minutes, but I’m accompanied by a screaming toddler, and questioning how he got into the markers again.

Not every writer finds themselves in the same situation as I am, but every writer knows there are days when it’s just so hard to focus up, and write on. Do you know what I do on these days when the words just won’t come to me?

I back away.

I breathe.

Writing has to have a little element of fun to it. If it is feeling more like a chore then sometimes it is better in the long run to let it go for a bit. Have other hobbies? Do them. Have kids? Soak up all of the family time you can. Do what makes you feel good. Ultimately, writing will happen again if that is a huge part of who you are. If you take a moment away from the screen (or typewriter, notebook, etc.) it doesn’t mean you have given up. You are not a quitter. You just need some time.

What are your ways of handling the inevitable rut you find yourself in? Can you think of any new ways that could benefit you when you hit a rough patch?

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