13 March 2019

Wednesday's Writers Block Exercise

Got Writer’s Block?

Yeah, it happens to the best of us.  Life gets in the way and your brain is taken in another direction and before you know it, it’s been days or weeks since you last looked at that book you’re trying to write.  You’ve forgotten little details.  What eye color did you give your hero?  What town was your heroine born in?  Perhaps you need to jumpstart your creative mojo, and that's what this series is designed for. Not to explain writer's block, but to help you move in a different direction.

I've always been more into the anti-hero. The bad guy with a heart of gold. Han Solo. Joe Asakua (The Condor from Gatachaman). You get the picture. I think having flaws in a hero is far more attractive than a perfect superhero.

Writing ordinary situations doesn't make for very exciting reading. Sometimes detailing the mundane day to day life can be tedious. I'll even go from writing a linear timeline to various scenes of action, then go back and fill in the blanks (so-to-speak) in an effort to keep me focused on the story and move it forward. Sometimes the characters will put the breaks on the direction you're taking his/her journey.

#10 Standard Procedures 

What if this happened all the time? Is your hero writing the rules, or breaking them?

>Write a checklist of rules and procedures for this situation. Now look for ways they can become obstacles for your hero.

> Make a list of skills from your hero's ordinary life. How could they be adapted to fit this challenge?

> Research how this situation (or place, or job) is handled in the real world. Who is in charge? Look for protocols and gatekeepers.

One character's crisis is another character's ordinary day at the office.

What would happen if this situation happened all the time? Is your hero a help or a hindrance?

Heroes often find themselves in extraordinary circumstances, but sometimes they can apply skills from their normal lives. If your hero can fix her truck, can she fix a tank? if she can lead her son's baseball team to victory, can she lead a band of survivors out of the Amazonian jungle?

The best heroes often end up breaking rules they've made.

Happy Writing!


***John August designed these cards to help writers fix plot holes, spice up stock characters and rethink your themes.  They, of course, do not guarantee you’ll get published or that you’ll become the next J.K. Rowling, and of course they are only a tool to help you think outside the box. I make no monetary gain with them nor do I expect anything in return.  I do not own the contents in these cards. If you're interested in them, here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Writer-Emergency-Pack/dp/B00R6ZLIOY/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1502046610&sr=8-2&keywords=john+august 

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