I'm Christina Lyon, a coffee sipping, piano playing, beach loving, word-obsessed freelance writer and musician. I'm on fire for helping freelance writers get paid and small biz owners succeed online. When I'm not reading or writing, I play music and explore the beaches and wild trails along the California coast.

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Beat Writer’s Block with these 7 Trusty Tricks

Christina Lyon

Hey there, I’m Christina, a freelance writer by day, fiction and poetry writer by night. At the moment–I’m stuck. Why am I writing this post? I’m shape-shifting to generate the creative juices and beat writer’s block.

What some might call procrastination–I call resourcefulness. Yes, I have deadlines due TODAY. Yes, I have a 300-page novel sitting on my desk that needs editing. As a writer, I’ve picked up some intel on how to get rid of writer’s block. If you’re here, you must be in the same boat as I am. Let’s get through this together.

Here are my trusty tricks to help you overcome writer’s block and reel your mind back into its creative haven. First of all…

First trick to beat writer’s block? Don’t freak out

I know how unsettling it feels to suddenly lose your inspiration. First thing’s first: don’t panic. This is only temporary and you will overcome writer’s block. Your wonderful brain will resume its normal functioning soon enough. For now, let’s try shape-shifting.

1. Write something out of the ordinary

When writers get stumped, every tap at the keyboard or jotted note feels painful. Do we give up and stop writing? Not on my watch. Let’s first try a few other tricks. I see you sitting there comfortably in your creative or freelance writing niche and I’m here to knock your chair over. From freelance writing to fiction, part of staying in the flow is keeping your mind stimulated.

Personally, if a deadline is pending and the words aren’t stacking up right, I’ll take 15-30 mins to stimulate my mind by writing fiction, poetry or a blog post. Dive into a different creative pool and see how the water feels. You may love it, you may loathe every second of it, but it’ll be different and different is good if you want to beat writer’s block.

However it fares, let your mind go wild. It’s tough to beat writer’s block by drilling away at something that simply isn’t working. There’s freedom in free writing: no pressure, no rules, just you and your weirdest, loveliest mind.

2. Unplug–I mean turn that sh*t off

Digital distractions are ubiquitous. The phone lights up or an email pings on the laptop screen and off we go vacuumed into our digital worlds. That’s why it’s important to turn off all devices when writing. If you need to beat writer’s block, you’re likely not going to break through it wasting time scrolling through social media apps. I see you Twitter, and yes I’m guilty.

Clear the temptation from the table by putting the phone in another room and turning off notifications on your laptop. Now that you’re unplugged you can focus. Is the screen still blank? Ok, let’s try the next trick.

3. Do tasks that serve writing without writing

Sometimes a little drudgery goes a long way. Rather than quitting when the writing’s crummy, I’ll work on other tasks related to writing. This can involve writing an outline, researching for an article, creating graphics related to my writing or networking.

If you’re a freelance writer: submit pitches, catch up on e-mails, update LinkedIn, freshen up your freelance writing portfolio, or manage invoices.

If you’re a creative writer: Make an outline, research your work in progress, submit your work to publications.

4. Consume magic

What causes writer’s block? There’s no singular answer, but it could be a matter of muse. In order to generate brilliant ideas, feed your mind with other people’s brilliant ideas. Read a provoking book, go to an art gallery or museum, listen to an entire album you love. Set the mood; light candles and dive in head-first. Brilliance inspires brilliance, so consume the magic and channel the inspiration into your own art.

Also, to be a writer, you must read. Period. The world of words is thrilling. If you are frantically plotting about how to get rid of writer’s block, reading a captivating story might be the breakthrough you need.

5. Create something

Many writers enjoy creative outlets other than writing. If the words aren’t flowing try creating something. This is highly personal and subjective depending on your interests. As a musician, when I need to beat writer’s block I’ll play piano, guitar, or write a song.

In all honesty, when I’m experiencing writer’s block I feel devoid of nearly all creativity. These are the most frustrating days (or weeks) when I’ll pace around my apartment in a spell of what I call “no inspiration.” Literally nothing inspires me, and when I’m at this point I usually need to…

6. Get moving

Ah, and now we’ve come to my absolute favorite way to beat writer’s block. Get the body moving! This can involve exercising or blasting music and dancing like no one’s watching. Sometimes the stuffy air inside stifles creativity. I’ll usually head out for a run or long walk. Movement sends nuggets of genius or as science calls it, oxygen, to the brain to generate mental clarity.

Often, I’ve been on a run in the midst of writer’s block and have had to stop and type out fresh ideas into my phone. Exercise isn’t something we all love to do but clearing the mind and focusing on the body is productive in generating inspiration and ideas.

7. Do something ridiculously fun

To be inspired, something needs to first inspire you. The pressure to create is real and can suck the fun right out of our beloved craft. So, be a kid again and do something ridiculously fun! Allow yourself to savor something you used to love as a kid but neglect as an adult.

For me, this can include going to the arcade and playing skeeball, boogie boarding, riding my bike or roller skating. The main element of this trick is to pick something you don’t ordinarily do that provides immense joy. I’m talking about a lose-your-voice-and-pee-your-pants-laughing kind of fun activity. Jot down a few ideas to have in your back pocket when writer’s block strikes.

Now write to beat writer’s block

Alas, we’ve circled back to our craft. Sometimes, we really don’t want to write, especially when there’s no muse; no inspiration. That said–you’re a writer. Even if you write one hundred words of shit, write it. Get out the icky bits so you can get to the gold pocket. I’m fairly certain you’re one trick away from magic!

So, tell me how you slay the beast. Do you have any secret weapons for how to beat writer’s block?

Found this helpful? Feel free to lend support by sharing this article. Connect with me on Twitter or Instagram.

Browse the archives for more freelance writing tips.

Debby Hudson


Freewriting is a great exercise to beat writer's block.

February 28, 2019

Freelancing Tips

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