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18 Ways to Overcome Boredom While Writing: A Guide for the Bored Writers

Boredom is a reality that writers often have to face. It can be a writing gig that is taking too long or perhaps it is that story that you thought about for a long while but now you are at loggerheads with yourself in the middle of it. Whatever the case may be but as writers, we should never lose hope. Here are a few tips and tricks that can help you reignite your passion for writing those great and wonderful pieces that you always dreamed of.

Key things that'll help you overcome boredom:

  1. Do something else for a while. Take a break from writing. A refreshed mind is better than a tired one. 
  2. Call it a day before you run out of ideas.
  3. Everybody likes to be at the top but few like the process of going from bottom to top. Learn to enjoy that journey that takes you from bottom to top.
  4. Take a walk and find out how it helps in bringing great ideas to the fore.  
  5. Disconnect yourself from the world and go somewhere remote. A little "me time" will help you refocus. 
  6. Music works on our minds and hearts in strange ways. Find out how it helps ignite your creativity.       
  7. Write something that YOU want to write. Forget the audience for this one piece. 
  8. Keep writing and never ever back down.

Table of Contents

Take a break

Maybe you have written enough for the time being. Sometimes too much writing dries us out. The mind runs out of ideas and the heart is no more in words. If you are in such a situation, the best course is to take a break from writing and do something else. Something that you enjoy. For example, you can read a book that you have been longing to read for a long time or watch a movie, etc.

This will refresh you and help you come back to your writing desk with fresh ideas and renewed enthusiasm.

To keep yourself fresh and energetic take breaks from writing periodically. For example in a 3-4 hour writing session take some snacks or do some exercise after every hour or a half. This will help keep boredom at bay and you will enjoy and do more work in less time.

Don't let yourself dry out

It is difficult to get fresh ideas when you completely run out of creative fuel. Hemingway has a trick where he advised that we should stop writing in the middle of a sentence. The advice has seemed to work for many famous authors such as Roald Dahl. The point is to never let yourself go dry for the next day. 

If you have no ideas to think about for tomorrow, it will be difficult for you to start the next morning. So stop writing when you still have a few ideas wandering in your mind

Challenge yourself  

Doing something that seems impossible boosts morale and takes enthusiasm for the next adventure to astronomical heights. Just imagining yourself overcoming great odds fills you with energy.

There is only one way out. Write!
There is only way out! Write!
Photo by Rob Wicks on Unsplash

Challenge your writing muscle and find out what you can do. Write on a subject that you think is impossible for you to write about. Achieve an n thousand words landmark in

a day. 

If you are still at a loss, you can try our writing app to challenge yourself to write a story or an essay in a limited amount of time without stopping.

Take it easy

Taking things too seriously affects your enthusiasm. You find everything overwhelming and you easily get tired. Relax for a while and see how things go. Tell yourself that worrying inside never solves any problem. If you worry too much, you blunder more. When you are relaxed your mind works better and you get better results. 

So instead of worrying laugh away your writing worries. 

Learn to enjoy the process

I hate writing, I love having written.

― Dorothy Parker

That is a problem that many writers have. But if you start to enjoy the slow and maundering process of writing, you will start to enjoy writing as a whole.

There are many ways to develop a taste for enjoying the writing process but it all depends on the kind of person you are.

Photo by Suzanne D. Williams on Unsplash
Everything in nature follows a process. Those who enjoy the process reap the reward.

For me learning to enjoy the rhythm of the sentences as I write them and reading them out loud works best. If I find them wrong,correct them in my unique way.

Another thing to add enjoyment to your writing routine is to look for synonyms and find the perfect word that sits beautifully in your sentence. All these things may look like more work but if you learn to get satisfaction and aesthetic pleasure out of it the additional work will seem like nothing. 

Go on a walk  

If you are running out of ideas or if you are bored and find nothing interesting to write about, going on a walk might be the best thing for you. 

Studies show that walking and creativity have a close relationship with each other. Walking clears your mind. As you start walking, your unconscious mind starts to wander. Your thoughts flitter here and there and you start thinking again. Eventually, after a while, you discover some great ideas growing in the unknown realms of your mind. 

Go somewhere remote   

Sometimes boredom is caused by having too many interests. Your mind wanders all day and you find pleasure in one thing and after a few moments you lose interest and move on to something else. In today's world, this basically means surfing the internet day in and day out. Self-control might be the best advice in such a situation but this is easier said than done. 

Where self-control fails, cutting yourself off from the internet might just work. If you find this an impossible feat you can go to someplace remote for a few hours. 

At first you will be quite frustrated with yourself and the urge to do something interesting will kick in again and again. After a day or two your mind will start to explore things around and in itself and you will start writing.

Listen to music

Turn on some music that stimulates your mind and energizes you. Close your eyes and give your imagination free rein to go wild. You will quickly find ideas and feelings to pour into your writing. 

If nothing else, music will relax you and enliven your mood. You will be refreshed and will be able to tackle the behemoth of writing with new energy.

You can find many playlists that may help you regain focus:

  1. Inspirational Music For Creative People — Chillout Mix
  2. Music for Imagination & Creativity
  3. Relaxing Hang Drum Mix

Psht. Hey! Yes, you! Did you know I wrote this blog post while listening to this?

Read a book you like

What better way to reignite your creative fire than to read a book?

Find a book you really want to read or pick your favorite from the shelf. You can also try your luck by reading a random book from some strange genre; new places and strange perspectives are a great way to make you think in creative dimensions and newer ways. 

Be sure to have a notebook by your side and note things down that inspire you, make you think, or touch you deeply. You can later on go through all these ideas and use on that inspires you the most to write.

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Continue reading

Try writing poetry

Tired of prose? Try your luck with some poetry. Learn some poetic form like pentameter or sonnet and try to write abiding by all those rules. You may not become the next Shakespeare but you will learn a lot about using words effectively in a sentence. If nothing else this exercise will help you get ready for your next writing project.

Go do something new and explore

Abandon your writing desk and go do something new and explore. You can start gardening for example. It is a slow, patient, and silent work that rewards in the long run i.e. very similar to writing. 

You can also try something that absorbs you completely until you forget about all your writing worries. You will be surprised to find yourself full of new ideas to write about when you come back for another try.  

Find out what sparks your curiosity

The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.

― Dorothy Parker

Curiosity is a strange beast. When it strikes you, you are unable to stop yourself even if you want to.

Find the curiosity behind what you write. Ask yourself:

  • What makes you think?
  • What is the trigger that sparks your inner creative?
  • What kind of subjects do you like to talk about?
  • What kind of ideas make you think?
  • What do you find interesting in this World?

Find out the answer to all these questions by exploring the unknown shores of new ideas and revisiting old ones that made you nostalgic.

Do this and soon you will find that narrow niche, the core of your curiosity and interest. Exploit it. Harness it and go finish that writing project.   

For once write for yourself

Enough of writing for others! Forcing yourself to write what you don't like or don't want to write will certainly make you bored with writing. Even if you are writing something that you like chances are you are forcing yourself. Forced work may seem productive fora short period but your creativity falls apart if forced for long.

Let the shackles of high standards and opinions of others break so you can unleash the spirit in you and write what you want. You think it is monstrous and will eventually shame you but perhaps it is something childlike with endless potential. 

Write freely for your own self and find out what that potential is. Give it a little slack and when you find something cherish it and hone it into a fine skill. 

Writing for yourself may not make your audience happy but it will let you find your style.

Change that font for God's sake

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Maybe that font you are using is bugging you and you don't know. Change it and find out how it helps. Make your font bigger, write in all caps or just play around until something triggers you. 

Change that background you are writing on; make it pink or some other fantastic wallpaper on which your writing is indecipherable. This all might seem foolish and you will probably change back to your defaults after some time but it sure is going to refresh your mind.

Try writing in the voice of a writer you love (or hate)

Write like that writer whose style leaves a lasting impression on you whenever you read it. Maybe you like Tolkien or are you a Hemingway fan? Copy their style. You might stagger or botch the whole thing up but what's the worry? You are only experimenting and trying something new.

You must keep experimenting to keep your creativity sharp. Trying the same thing, writing in the same way, might seem easy but it drains you. Go out, try that new writing style, write in that new form, and bring out the creative in you.

Use new words and find out what they feel like

Writing is akin to creating a house and your words are the bricks.

Your true weapon as a writer are your words. Words give a form to your ideas and new words may fit better or make you think of something new.

Open a dictionary and look for unique and interesting words, and note them down in your notepad. Once you have enough words, try to use them to write something and send it to a friend and find out what he thinks of your linguistic abilities.

Take the opposite road

You are writing a piece where a knight in shining armor is saving a princess. The knight is about to rescue the princess but- you are bored. 

You had dreamed about that knight and his famous adventures but now after journeying with him word after word and hundreds of sentences you really don't like his stink. His character is too uptight. He speaks too loudly. He boasts too much. 

Perhaps, it is time to go the opposite way. Write a story where a knight is kidnapped by his horse and a princess in shining shoes on a mounted dragon is going to rescue him. Do it for a change. Do it because you can.

Use a Writing Prompt

You never know what might trigger or inspire you. Go on a prompt hunt or check out our list of short story writing prompts. Writing prompts act as seeds that you can nurture and grow into a full blown story.

As you know, madness is like gravity...all it takes is a little push.

― The Joker, Heath Ledger

If finding prompts seems too boring or tedious you can try our Call of Writing app to challenge yourself. It has thousands of prompt ideas and challenges that are sure to trigger the writer in you. Try it out; you won't be disappointed.

Closing thoughts

No matter how bored you are with the whole writing process, never quit. You can take breaks or even longer writing-free holidays but always keep writing. 

You are bored? Sure you can stop but come again the next day and the next until you are back in your element. Keep trying your luck. 

If you have any advice about writing boredom let me know in the comments below.

Related sources

  1. How to stop yourself from being bored while writing?
  2. Three Ways to Bust Writing Boredom

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