Good afternoon, Arrowheads! A problem many writers face are periods where we feel like everything we write is terrible. We get discouraged because our descriptions sound cliche, or beat ourselves up because our character sounds like a caricature. Whatever the reason may be, we often get fed up with trying, take a prolonged break from working on our projects, and blame writer’s block.
That’s no bueno. Claiming “I’ve fallen ill with the writer’s block” doesn’t accelerate your dream of finishing your WIP into becoming a reality. There are other methods to rise from the “hot garbage” state of writing. So sit back, grab some coffee, and explore with me as we learn three methods for turning hot garbage writing into beautiful books.
Method 1: Imagine and Write An Alternative Scene
One of the most effective methods I’ve learned to utilize when going through writer’s block is to brainstorm alternative ways the scene can go, and write out each one. 98% of the time, one of the alternative scenes ends up fulfilling what needs to be achieved with the scene. Plus, when needed, you can take good bits and pieces of the original, bland scene and use them to your advantage in the alternative scene.
Method 2: Recycle Scenes that Aren’t Needed
If you write a scene that you like but is not needed in your novel, cut it from your WIP document and paste it into a Dump File. Just because it doesn’t fit with the story at this moment doesn’t mean it’s bad writing. The Dump File serves as an excellent resource when you’ve hit the Hot Garbage mindset, as the cut scenes are often just what you need to get the momentum going again.
Method 3: Consult With a Writing Buddy
Think your writing is hot garbage? Look to your writing buddy to get their opinion. Endless possibilities emerge from seeking guidance from fellow writers. It may be that you’re overthinking it and the writing isn’t as bad as you think. Maybe the writing can use some tweaking, and your writing buddy will offer constructive criticism to improve it. If you’re stuck, your writing buddy can help come up with some possibilities you may not have thought of, thus providing inspiration to get back on track.
These are my top 3 tips for overcoming the “my writing is hot garbage” mindset. Remember, you can always find an alternative route, reuse removed scenes laer, and ask for help when you’re feeling stuck!
What’s your favorite way to overcome the Hot Garbage Writer mindset? Let me know in the comments!