How to Deal With Blogger's Block
Hint: I don't actually have the answer to this question.
I've been doing this travel blogging malarkey for about 18 months now and on the whole, I've loved it. I would even happily say that I have found my 'calling' cringe. But what happens when things get a bit....meh. You know the feeling right? The one where you will literally do anything so you don't have to sit down and do the one thing you actually need to do? You'll clean your toilet, clip your toenails, hell mate even clip your boyfriends toenails, all so you don't have to get on with the task at hand.
For me, said task is something I genuinely love. I get a lot of pleasure from writing on this little space on the internet I call my own, and it actually provides me my income. Mostly indirectly, but still, it pays the bills. Perhaps that's actually why it's fallen more into the "ugh, I have to do this' category, I don't know. Either way, I know that it feels odd, and annoying and is genuinely making me more than a little bit blue.
On the whole, I would say that I am a pretty fast writer: once I have an idea, i genuinely have to sit down and write it out.....that sounds dramatic, I know, but it's almost an urge to get my molecule of an idea onto paper, or in my case, the ether. Once I start writing, it does tend to flow and I will often find that I have written 800 words or so before I realise it. Actually writing, is not a problem for me. Getting the ideas is also not too much of a problem for me. I have a VERY active imagination and love reading so finding inspiration tends not to be too much of an issue to me either.
What causes my writers block, is more specific. It's far more tailored to the fact that my form of writing is on a blog. So, it's not writers block per se, it's bloggers block. What's the difference between blogging and writing, I hear you say? Okay I hope i hear you day, otherwise I'm hearing voices.....again. Well, writing is part of blogging. Part of it........
Blogging isn't just about writing. Actually, writing isn't just about writing. Being a travel writer, journalist, blogger, whatever is more than just the physical words you read at the end of the journey. It's more, even, than the idea that sparks the words. It's research, editing, tweaking, reading and re-reading......and that's just the words. Of course, any decent blog will have beautiful pictures alongside the beautifully crafted words. Those pictures take time, take patience, take editing and uploading time.
I'm really not complaining and I am well aware of how 'easy' my life is in comparison to many. My commute is a two minute walk from my bed to the desk, and I have the freedom to work from anywhere that has decent Wi-Fi and perhaps a socket to plus my charger in. That means that some days, I work at a beach bar and others, from a coffee shop. So, yeah I'm not complaining. Honest.
I'm only human though, and I can be easily de-railed. Speaking to a fellow travel blogger, she gave me some sound advice -- " Write often, even if you don't write much, because writing nothing? That makes it super hard to get your groove back." Taking these word to heart, I sat down and started writing about the very thing that had caused my lack of writing.
How Does a Travel Blogger Deal With Writers Block?
I am well aware that I haven't actually answered the question I posed in the title of this blog post. There is no 'cure' for writers block, and there sure isn't a neat Google friendly list I can easily pop out.
All I can offer, is my little toolkit for when bloggers block strikes. I always have a notepad with me....but honestly, the best way for me to keep on top of my blog post ideas is through my editorial calendar. I draft a post with absolutely no care to my grammar, style or length as I know it'll be edited later. I also ask for advice. I am lucky enough to have a great group of very supportive bloggers at my disposal on a super secret Facebook group, and they always give me great tips and the motivation that gets me going again.
Lastly, I just write. Once I get to the stage where I am starting to annoy myself, I just write something. Anything. These are my pearls of wisdom for any of you procrastinators out there......Just Do It.