One of the most frequent complaints I’m hearing from those down the NaNoWriMo word mines is that they keep getting stuck.
As it happens I have already written a post on how to get unstuck. It is rather lengthy, however, so here’s a quick and dirty version of what you should do when you get stuck:
- Dance. That’s right, get up from the computer, turn whatever music you like up loud, and shake it! Dance! Dance! Dance! Do it till you’re sweating. Then dance some more.
- Run around the block. For some of us dancing is just not our thing. But we can run. Or shoots some hoops. Or some other physical activity away from the computer.
- Read newspapers. This is where Karen Healey gets many of her ideas. Whenever she gets stuck she goes to her fave newspapers and starts reading. Obscure and weird articles are best.
- Send someone in with a gun. Raymond Chandler’s favourite I’m-stuck solution. He was also fond of knocking his characters unconscious. Many writers like to blow stuff up. Cassandra Clare likes to have characters who fancy each other discover that THEY’RE ACTUALLY BROTHER AND SISTER. The point being: throw complications at your characters. Make ’em suffer! See how they react.
To sum up: to get unstuck you need to either take a break and do something that uses your whole body, or you need to throw something new at your characters. Or both.
I’m sure my gentle readers will have been more suggestions to unstuckify you.