I Don’t Feel Like Writing

I don’t feel like writing cause my bra strap is too tight. I don’t feel like writing cause I’m not in the mood. I don’t feel like writing cause I’m too tired. I don’t feel like writing cause I don’t have anything really brilliant to say today. I don’t feel like writing cause my typing is worse than my penmanship tonight. I don’t feel like writing cause my asthma is bugging me. I don’t feel like writing, I just don’t feel like writing. Can’t I just not feel like writing?

I can always come up with reasons why I don’t feel like writing, some of them are real reasons. But, in the end, later I’ll still be trying to catch up on everything I didn’t write the night before. Time keeps passing, you can’t politely ask everything to stop for you.

What do you do to get back on track when you don’t feel like writing? Sometimes I have a shower. Going for a drive or a walk also works, weather and gas money permitting. Even just taking yourself away for the time it takes to make a fresh coffee is now and then enough to get yourself back into a writing frame of mind.

If not, maybe you need to make a list instead. Lists are a short form of writing. You don’t have to obey rules of punctuation, grammar or spelling. You just make notes for yourself. List your plot developments for fiction you’re working on. List possible spin off articles if you’re writing non-fiction. Make a list of ideas you could work on if you felt like writing.

In the process of making a list I usually find I suddenly really feel like writing again. In fact, I often start writing right on the back of my list.

The Reframing Matrix

Here is an idea for the next time you are stuck with an idea and can’t fight your way out of a wet paper bag with it. Try the reframing matrix plan.

The Reframing Matrix is a formal technique used to look at problems from different perspectives. It helps to expand the number of options open to you for solving a problem.

You draw up a reframing matrix by posing a question in a box in the middle of a piece of paper. You then draw a grid around it. Each cell will contain approaches to the problem, seen from one perspective.

One way of using the technique is the ‘4 Ps’ approach. This looks at the problem from the following viewpoints: Product, Planning, Potential and People. Another set of perspectives is to ask your self how different professionals would approach the problem. Useful professions to consider would be medical doctors, engineers, systems analysts, sales managers, etc.

I found this on a site called Mind Tools. Consider applying the reframing matrix to your writing blocks or hold ups. What would your four perspectives or viewpoints be? Overall you could say: Story, Publisher, Reader, Characters. But it could be applied to sections of your fiction too. Look at the situation from the viewpoint of four different characters. If you are working on a non-fiction article look at it from the viewpoint of four possible readers- other writers, professionals, your siblings, a checkout cashier, etc.

It does help to give you fresh ideas and slants/ angles on the ideas you already have.