Good Morning everyone. I have a guest here today to atlk about Overcoming Writer's Block. Please welcome William D. Hicks!
If you’ve written long enough you’ve experienced writer’s block, so you know how frustrating it is to sit in front of that computer with a blank screen staring back. Hopefully, one of these ten tips will help you start writing again.
- Write now. Though writing through the block doesn’t seem rational, sometimes it works. Keep writing. I know it’s coming out wrong. So wrong you want to shred the paper, even though it’s on a computer screen. But don’t. Wait, keep writing. It’s an old writing technique. If you can’t think up anything to write, try doing a mind-dump. Just write everything in your mind, a stream of conscious dump, and see what comes out. Try this for a half hour. Is the block gone? If not, keep doing it. Eventually, you will have written something. While this something might look like what the cat coughed up it might also give you some great ideas for a story.
- Be creative. Instead of writing, try painting, or drawing or playing music. Don’t worry about writing for now. You can write tomorrow.
- Do the Opposites. Try an old actor’s trick and focus on not doing something. This often becomes the thing you want/need to do. Try telling yourself, “I don’t want to write.” Say that ten times out loud. Then do something else for a half hour. See how much you want to write afterwards. Try writing.
- Exercise. This will pump blood into your brain and distract you from worrying. Plus it’s good for you. Once done, try writing.
- Do a writing exercise. There are specific exercises available to spur different types of writing, e.g. poetry and fiction. Either buy a book or look online for exercises. It’s amazing the stories that have started as writing exercises.
- Listen to music. Really listen to the words. How are they stitched together? Why? What do they mean? Try writing a song.
- Go to a movie. Often this triggers an “I could have written that line better” thought. Write some thoughts down about the movie. Maybe even start a story from those thoughts.
- Read a book. This often triggers the same response the as #7. I sometimes read a sentence and think, “Why did the author write it that way? I would have done it this way.” Again, that line might spur you onto writing a great story.
- Review old unfinished manuscripts. You have them. We all do. Try to rewrite one. Editing might also spur you onto writing. Even if doesn’t, you’ll feel like you’re writing which should stop you from beating yourself up.
- Ask writer friends how they’ve beaten writer’s block. If they have no answers, tweet/blog for suggestions. Most everyone has a trick that has worked for them. Try something that sounds appealing to you. If that doesn’t work, try something different.
In the end remember the famous Monty Python line, “And now for something completely different.” Cut yourself from slack and do something that doesn’t resemble writing. Go grocery shopping. Deposit your coins at the bank. Get your hair done. Take a leisurely bath. Don’t get hung up on the fact that you’re not writing. Everyone needs a vacation from time to time, even from what they love most.
William D. Hicks
Killer Flies and Twist
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As a boy growing up in 1953, Kevin Hull enjoyed playing games with his group of boyhood friends, like the game of "ledge." After one such game with his friend Billy Hawkins, the two find themselves involved in a terrible accident that will forever change their lives.
A work of short psychological horror from our Spectres line.
Killer Flies The Army plans to use a new breed of flies to protect combat soldiers. But Dr. John Pankow, their creator, is worried that his killer flies are uncontrollable. Will Mother Nature's most genetically-altered weapon be the ultimate armor, or the potential ravager of the entire world?
Excerpt – Killer Flies
“So, you created a vaccine?” General Donner asked.
“Yes, but its effectiveness is only twenty days, or less, depending on metabolic rate. Plus upon further testing this treatment doesn’t work on everyone.”
“Any more questions before I continue?” Pankow waited, no one’s hand went up. “Even though many of my colleagues see little harm in allowing the mix of killer flies with general house flies, I disagree. Currently interbreeding appears safe, because few can survive alone, and without ‘mothers,’ as we call the females, they can’t multiply. But that doesn’t prevent these flies from mutating and forming a new lethal strain. And this would be even more likely if one of the mothers escapes.”
“That won’t happen,” General Bider quickly interjected. “We have one room of mothers which is segregated from all the others.”
“But what happens if one does escape?” Carrie Jacobs, Dr. Pankow’s new research assistant, asked.
Before the doctor could respond, General Willard did. “We’ve taken precautions so that won’t happen; a full bee suit, a security access door, and researchers must go through a sealed room to get at those dangerous mothers. Pardon the pun.”
A slight giggle circled the room. It irritated Pankow. This was serious business, not a place for stupid puns.
“If one female escapes or gets into the wrong hands it will have dire effects. That is why all doors require a key card, and an electrical Flash-Kill system will be installed next year. Funding cuts, you understand, made it impossible to purchase this system until then,” General Bider said, giving no indication he was sorry about the funding issues.
“If one ever escapes it might mean the end of the world,” Pankow finished, allowing his last words to reverberate in their minds.
“I think Dr. Pankow is reading too many science fiction magazines.” General Bider laughed. “These flies will save our soldiers’ lives. We have them under control gentlemen. Are there any questions I can answer?”
Several hands shot up.
Dr. Pankow has every right to be worried. The Military are dead set on using these enhanced flies as a weapon of war, forget the fact they are not completely controllable. Every attempt they have tried at finding a substance which will NOT cause them to go into a feeding frenzy has not been proven effective.
He is not shocked to receive the letter stating that testing is to continue and they are going to be used as a weapon. However, he knows the devastation that can come from this and he takes matters into his own hands. He determines that killing them is the only way to prevent world devastating effects
Unfortunately his protective suit has a malfunction, and his assistant, Carrie Jacobs, can't stop him from entering their holding cell. She has no choice but to release the chemical to kill the flies and severally injure Dr. Pankow. However, things go from bad to worse as pandemonia breaks out as the Dr. is recovering and a female fly SURVIVEd the chemicals and has mates and spread the killer flies out in the world. And within a few weeks, all over the globe.
I won't spoil how it ends, but you can bet it's not good...to find out what happens you need to read this short. It will take less than one hour.