Friday, June 05, 2009

Breaking Writer’s Block, Part 4: Imagine Readers

OK, so you’re intellectually paralyzed, unable to write the first word of an executive summary that your boss has asked you to draft for her boss. Writing not to the next level but the level above that one—that’ll land a lot of writers in a creative dead end!

One way to deal with this dilemma is to picture yourself in a face-to-face meeting with all your readers. What are their concerns? Would they counter your statements with statements of their own? Are the who, what, when, where, why, and how enough, or would you need more specific details, perhaps three what’s and four how’s? Write the dialogue as it unfolds in your mind. If your fingers can’t keep up with the keyboard, then use a microcassette recorder and speak the dialogue aloud and play it back when you’re ready to copy what you’ve “heard.”

Again, the idea is to break through writer’s block, to get the creative juices flowing. Once they do, jump into drafting mode.

Here are links to books on writing by Philip Vassallo: