How to Conquer Writer’s Block

Hey guys. I haven’t posted in a while. Things have been crazy. I’m moving, my grandpa died, I went on a vacation, and more. But I’m back and ready to get at it.
Another reason I haven’t been posting much is because I had writer’s block. Yes. If you are a writer I’m sure those words send chills down your spine. Writer’s block is so well know that even most non writers have at least a vague idea of what that horror is. And us writers? Well most of us could tell you first hand about writer’s block.
Almost every writer has, or will, at one point or another experience writer’s block. And we panic. What if this is the end? What if we never write another comprehensive sentence for the rest of our lives?
The first step to obliterating writer’s block is to just calm down. It’s not the end of the world, even though it may seem like it. Remember, this happens to everyone.
“But it doesn’t happen this extreme to most people!” you wail.
Yes, it most likely does. You may feel like you are the only one with a writer’s block this bad, but that’s not true. Just remember, this happens to everyone.
The next step is to identify the root of your writer’s block. Writer’s block is caused by many things, including, but not limited to, the following:
Laziness

When you just can’t force yourself to sit down and write. You always come up with something else to do.
Cluelessness
You have no problem sitting down to write, the problem arrives when you do sit down to write. You don’t know what to do with your story next.
Lack of Motivation

You know what to do with your story, and you’re sitting down at your computer, ready and willing to write. But you just can’t find the words. You’re bored as you flounder around on your keyboard.
Personal Stuff
You want to write, you know what to write, but you’re not motivated in another way, because you’re distracted by things going on in your personal life. This is the type of writer’s block I have been experiencing.
There are many more types of writer’s block, but these are the only ones I have personally gone through and feel experienced enough to talk about.
Also remember that your writer’s block could be a combination of any or all.
Now that you have identified your writer’s block, you need to cure it. To completely cure it may take a while, but at least you can get started now.
Laziness
To cure laziness you just need to force yourself to write. And that may sound easy, but sometimes it’s not. And that’s why you may need to find a way to force yourself to write.
One way is to set a word goal for the day/week/month, and if you don’t reach that goal you have to pay a friend or family member money, favors, or things.
Another way is to keep a few writer’s magazines or books on hand, and read a page or two from one before starting to write. It will get you thinking about writing, and maybe even excited.
Cluelessness
This one is easy. You don’t know what you’re going to write next. Then plan. But maybe you don’t want to plan. Another way to cure cluelessness is free writing. Let yourself go crazy and don’t censor yourself.

You’ll be surprised about what can happen when you just sit down and write whatever comes into your mind for fifteen or twenty minutes.
If none of this helps, maybe you might have to start over, or take a brake and write something else. Listen to your gut, it’s usually right about these types of things.
Lack of Motivation
Maybe you need to throw your outline or plan to the curb, and just write what you think should happen, instead of what you planned. And remember, if you aren’t enjoying it, odds are your readers aren’t either.
If that doesn’t work, maybe you should consider moving on to a different project and coming back to this later.
Personal Stuff
It’s okay that your personal life is affecting your writing. Maybe you should take a break from writing and come back to it when you can concentrate. That’s what I had to do with my writing. I had way too much going on at once, and my mind couldn’t transfer to writing. But at some point I had to just sit down and force myself to write, because after a while I had gotten into the habit of not writing, because of everything going on, and that can turn into laziness
Those are tips taken from my personal experiences. I hope they help as you too try to conquer that evil thing known as writer’s block.
Elizabeth

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My (Sort Of) Review of The Book Thief

Happy New Year! I’m so excited for 2015 and all it brings.
The Book Thief… Where do I begin? It’s probably my favorite historical fiction novel I’ve read yet. This won’t be like many other book reviews I do. This is more of a “Why You Should Read This”, type of book review. (Kind of like a recommendation, with a touch of reviewing.)
It begins when Liesel Meminger is eight years old and riding on a train to her new foster parents. She doesn’t understand why her mother can’t take care of her anymore. Then, her brother dies. She steals a book at his funeral. And that’s where it all starts.
First of all, it’s narrated by Death. How cool is that?!?! Death isn’t this cold, heartless person either. He can be very sympathetic and caring. Just don’t ask him to be nice. Here are few of my favorite quotes from Death:
“Here is a small fact: You are going to die.”
“It kills me sometimes, how people die.”
“I am haunted by humans.”
I love Death’s voice. And Liesel interested him so much, he learned her story.
As for the story itself, it’s pretty much about a girl in Germany who takes books from wherever she can get them: book burnings, grave diggers, and the mayor’s wife. Her foster parents take in a Jew, and her whole perspective on life changes. I can’t say much more without spoilers. So just go read it. Like now.
As for the characters themselves, they’re so vivid I feel like I know them personally.
Liesel, the book thief, is probably one of the strongest girl I’ll ever read about.

She’s so innocent and naïve at the beginning, and at the ends she’s seen so many people die. I love her simplicity, loyalty and caring, and her fellow bookwormish tendencies.
Max, the Jew they take in, is a tough, strong fist fighter who is afraid of being caught. He can be quite poetic sometimes and loves words almost as much as Liesel. I love their special bond.

Rudy is Liesel’s best friend. Oh my gosh I ship them so hard. He’s incredibly loyal to Liesel, and it’s obvious to everyone except Liesel that he likes her. He would do pretty much anything for her.

And then there’s Liesel’s foster parents, who she calls Mamma and Papa.

Her momma is gruff, but you know that she loves Liesel. Her papa is an accordion player who teaches Liesel how to read. They have a really special relationship.

And the ending… No spoilers, but it actually made me tear up, which is super hard for me to do in a book. I looked kinda like this:

I give The Book Thief five out of five stars.
So there’s my (kind of) review of The Book Thief. Go read it. Like right now.
Have you read The Book Thief yet? If so, what did you think of it? And what other historical fiction novels do you think I should read and review?
Elizabeth