Many introverts are creative writers because writing is what they love to do. As an introvert I prefer to write, as opposed to talking, to communicate my thoughts. Talking is what I do for a living, but writing is my strength. But it doesn’t always easy.
There are times when I hit a wall as I’m trying to write. It’s better known as writer’s block, and it’s frustrating. It’s Sunday morning, and I want to post an article on Monday; but for the life of me, I can’t think of something to write about.
So how can introverts get those creative juices flowing? Here are seven suggestions.
1. Read others’ writing
The idea for this post came from one I read by Sophia Dembling, When an Introvert’s Brain Stops Producing. I’m sure she’d be totally stoked to know I was inspired by her article in Psychology Today. She’d also appreciate the fact that I stole her idea, or maybe not.
In Three Secrets to Writing Better, Erik Deckers, shares bits of advice on how to become a better writer. They are write everyday; read the newspaper; and my favorite, steal from other writers’ styles. (I think what he really means is to learn from the best.)
2. Take a walk
Some of my best ideas come from taking my morning walks, where I traverse the neighborhood listening to music or local radio on my phone. For some it may be hiking hills or going to the gym. Scientifically it’s been proven that what’s good for the body is good for the mind. It provides clarity and a time to reflect, which introverts thrives on.
I love to include my family, friends, customers, and events in my life in my writing. They provide the basis for my posts. In one post I wrote, I equate my basement to LinkedIn recommendations. You may be wondering what my grungy basement has to do with LinkedIn recommendations. Now think about where recommendations are located on your LinkedIn profile. You see what I mean?
4. Write, just write
I have a bazillion rough drafts/started posts that need to be completed. When an idea hits me, I write the beginning of a “brilliant” blog which may or may not see the light at the end of the tunnel. Others I’ll return to and finish the thoughts I had way back then.
You can write stream of consciousness, which is simply writing without stopping, just writing and then later correct any errors. For some it’s too messy. But others like the freedom it offers. What you may have at the end may not be worth keeping.
5. Give yourself a break; not everything has to be original
I hate to admit it, but not all of my posts are original. Most bloggers will tell you the same thing; we re-purpose what we’ve already written. When I was in marketing, we called it leveraging material.
So I go into my archives and I pull out something from long ago, something people won’t remember. I write a new intro and change the wording around in the lists or body of the post. Voila. Take a break. You can’t expect to write creative verbiage every time you post.
6. Don’t put all your eggs into one basket
I have labored over blog posts for days and even weeks. Don’t do this. If what you’re writing isn’t ready for Prime Time, save it for another day. You may have to think about it for a few days, or even a week, before it feels right for you.
In fact, this post is a couple of weeks in the makings. I will go back and forth between multiple posts if necessary. Other times I will write a post on my smart phone, when the right moment hits me.
7. Change your setting
Some of my best ideas come to me when I’m somewhere other than my house. There are distractions, such as multiple media going on at the same time, e.g., television, radio, my daughter’s Netflix show blaring from her computer. A place like Starbucks provides a great place for me to get away and get the creative juices going.
The only problem you may face is being disrupted by someone who wants to talk with you while you’re trying to write. Read this article about how I was interrupted by someone while I was trying to reflect.
8. Write about losing your mojo
My last suggestion is to write about losing your creative juices…temporarily. It’s something you’re experiencing, something close to you; so why not write about it. I personally think this makes people more depressed about not being able to write.
My Creative Writing college professor said writing about writing is cliché, so we were forbidden to do it. Instead he wanted us to write about sex (he wanted us to write about what we knew).
It will pass, this temporary loss of creative juices. Introverts rely on themselves to conjure up their creativity; they don’t enjoy brainstorming with others. So there may be spells of creativity loss that can be frustrating, to say the least.