Writer’s Block

In the midst of assignment season, I have been stuck trying to write a 2000 word piece on whatever I want…eek! My only problem with this is I find it difficult to channel all of my creative ideas into one that will work for what I need to do. Without a prompt, I find my mind goes wild and I’m stuck not writing anything at all! After finally finishing my piece (days later), I have a few tips for any writers that have struggled with the dreaded writer’s block.

 

  1. Plan

The only reason I find my way out the creative abyss is by learning how to properly plan out my work. This is incredibly important for any type of writing (fiction, non-fiction, critical writing) and will help to give you focus. Once you have focus, you can move forward in your story, build your characters and support your ideas!

 

  1. Get outside! 

Moving your body is great for stimulating your mind, especially when you spend the majority of your day sitting in front of a laptop. Getting outside can also give you inspiration; you could drive or walk by something that makes a great idea for a story. It’s the little things that spark all of our creative genius!

 

  1. Try a new idea

Do you find yourself always writing in the same genre? Why don’t you try something new! If you’re a fiction writer who constantly writes in the sci-fi genre, try writing a romance, or something for younger readers possibly. Non-fiction pieces can be really engaging, and creative non-fiction could always incorporate your style and help you expand your skills! Think outside of your regular parameters and write something new.

 

  1. Write through it!

Just start writing! Instead of aimlessly staring at your laptop (or journal if you’re a hardcopy writer), just start writing. If ideas are hard to come by, just write what comes into your head. Chances are, you’ll come across something you like to write about, something that you want to say, or surprise yourself with a great idea. (Stream of consciousness writing is also very popular in poetry, give it a try!)

 

  1. Have a break

If you’re constantly writing or working and your mind is overwhelmed, just take a break! Make sure you have a dedicated writing space that you can walk away from, and walk away from it. Your mind is the space where you keep all of your ideas; it’s the place where us writers create and shape characters, whole worlds really, and sometimes, you need a break. Don’t be afraid to take one. Your writing with thank you afterwards.

 

Though this is what works best for me, it might not be for you. Let me know if you’re stuck with writer’s block and how you get yourself out of the infamous rut below!

 

What I’m wanting to read but don’t have enough time to read: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Verandah 31 Launch!

After months of editing, designing and emailing, we are finally ready to launch Verandah‘s 31st issue! We are incredibly excited to present our journal to you in Melbourne, and for the first time ever, in Geelong!

Details for each event are located below, and they are both FREE events. Come along for live music, drinks, nibblies, and readings from V31 and beyond!

Creating this journal has been an incredible experience, and I’m so excited to have my name in this book. We’ve worked tirelessly over the past year to uncover the potential of talented artists and writers, and our 31st issue holds great examples of the fantastic work our worldwide contributors have produced. You will be able to purchase this volume online in a few weeks, and in various other places which I will announce when we have a complete list, including at both of our launches!

ONE MORE THING!

This year, we are launching Verandah as an eBook for the first time! If you’re strapped for cash, please consider a smaller donation to ensure the continuation of small publications like ours through the purchase of our eBook, available from our website in a few weeks time.

Please come and celebrate with us at The Owl and Cat Theatre in Richmond and at Beav’s Bar in Geelong!

The Owl and Cat Theatre 
34 Swan St, Richmond
VIC 3121
Date: Sunday 4th September, 2016
Time: 12pm-3pm
RSVP: here

Beav’s Bar
77/79 Little Malop St, Geelong
VIC 3220
Date: Sunday 11th September, 2016
Time: 2pm-5pm
RSVP: here

 

I’ve been a Busy Bird

After months of searching for an editorial internship, I have finally found one at Busybird publishing! Busybird is a small publishing house based in Melbourne, founded by Blaise and her husband Kev, who are both wonderfully talented publishers, editors and designers.

I’ve been travelling to their offices for the past month (only one day a week) and have already seen improvements in my proofing skills, as well as learnt quite a lot about successful blogging!

I have never really considered myself a writer; I don’t make time to sit down and write, even writing blog posts is difficult for me! I’ve never felt very passionately about my fiction writing skills, though the work that Blaise has had me complete over the past few weeks has given me a kind of spark. I actually want to write now.

Their website showcases their weekly blog posts that help writers move through writer’s block, improve their fiction through structure and planning, and quite a lot more! Take a look if you’re a struggling writer like me; their tips have been incredibly helpful in persuading me to take up writing again.

Aside from their help with my writing, they’ve also given me an insight into the publishing world. Some days, I look at my editing work and wonder whether I’ve made the right decision in choosing this as a career. I love working with authors and focusing their work so that it’s the best it can be, and a publisher does that but from afar. Having the chance to move away from constant editing is fantastic and keeps my editing focus strong. (For those who don’t do a lot of editing, let me tell you that it is frustrating, tedious and incredibly rewarding, even when you’re still finding things that need to be altered as your publication goes to print *insert angry emoji face*).

Blaise has taught me a lot through her blogs, specifically about the different ways that you can publish a book. Traditional publishing is all that I had previously considered as a fulfilling route (e.g. being selected by a big publishing house such as Penguin, HarperCollins etc.), but there are heaps of self-publishing options. Publishing houses like Busybird help authors with editing, typesetting and designing their books, and the author pays for the printing, meaning that the author makes all of the profit from sales. In the traditional route, the publishing house that has commissioned the work, or is paying for the printing, will take a cut of all profits made. Of course with bigger publishing houses also comes a bigger marketing plan and you have the little penguin in the corner that makes it feel more legitimate, but that doesn’t always mean that it’s going to be a huge success.

One thing that has been burned into my brain through reading Busybird’s blog is that no one knows what will be a best seller! There’s no special algorithm or way of knowing what will sell a million copies, or even a hundred copies! Publishing is a tough business and giving someone the opportunity to create a novel, whether fiction or non-fiction, is ultimately what I would love to do, whether that’s with a smaller publishing house, or with Penguin.

Maybe I should look into creating my own publishing house…

Future Lauren, get onto it!

 

 

What I’m currently reading: Game of Thrones Book 4: A Storm of Swords Part 2, Blood and Gold

(Phew, what a long title!)