Are you looking for some creativity and motivation? Are you feeling stuck in the mud because your revisions to your story are not coming together?
Don't feel discouraged. There are no worries. There are no hurries. Think about Pete the Cat by Eric Litwin aka Mr. Eric . . .
"Does Pete worry?
Time to rewind. Time to renew. Time to refresh.
1. Read your manuscript aloud and ask someone else to read your story aloud. After all, a picture book is meant to be read aloud.
2. Watch television. Better yet, watch TV with the kids or grandkids. Check out the many excellent programs on PBS for Kids. Follow the adventures of Chris and Martin on the Wild Kratts as they travel around the world sharing science discoveries and learning.
3. Set your manuscript aside. Put your manuscript away for awhile. Come back to it later. It will still be there. Stories that simmer overtime become well done.
4. Go outside and enjoy the beauty all around you. Smell the flowers. Pick some weeds. Greet your neighbors. Listen to the birds. Take in all the sights and sounds using your five senses.
5. Read and study a stack of currently published picture books. Good writers know they make excellent mentor texts.
6. Listen to children's conversations at the library, park or grocery store to help you write dialogue that is authentic and believable.
7. Work on a creative project. Sing a children's song, play an instrument, create a woodworking project, knit a scarf or sew a gift for a kid.
8. Consider watching documentaries with the kids this summer for a change of pace. Expand and inspire young minds about controversial topics to encourage thoughts and opinions. As a writer, you will discover new ideas and topics to write about.
9. Read picture books with your children and/or grandchildren.
10. Keep a journal or notebook handy for sparkly ideas and thoughts that pop into your head.
11. Read a picture book from a different genre than your current WIP. Find inspiration from the latest 2015 Summer SCBWI Bulletin.
12. Try writing long hand on a piece of paper instead of typing on a keyboard. Write with markers, pencils and colorful pens.
13. Take a nap. zZzZ! A twenty minute nap will give you renewed energy and increase your cognitive skills.
14. Enjoy a snack. For many writers, chocolate always works! A dark chocolate chip cookie, please, [homemade of course] and a tall glass of cold milk should do the trick. It works for me!
"If you give a mouse a cookie,
he's going to ask for a glass of milk.
15. It's five o'clock somewhere. Cheers! ¡Salud! Skål!
17. Move away from your writing desk. Consider writing outside at the picnic table under the shade of an oak tree. Grab a clipboard with paper, pencils and pens and a tall glass of lemonade. Don't forget the sunscreen and bug repellent.
18. Listen to some music while writing.
20. Beat the clock! Set a timer for sixty minutes. Begin writing. Stop when the timer goes bBzZz. How many words did your write?
|Set the timer for 60 minutes.|
|A Glass of|
22. Read a book about the craft of writing for children.
23. Take a brain break . . . Take a deep breath. Stand up and stretch. Lean left. Lean right. Do a little dance. Try ten jumping jacks followed by five knee bends. Now touch your toes. Exhale. Continue writing.
24. How about another cup of coffee or a tall glass of iced tea?
25. Create a mission statement. This is my writer's statement:
"To become a better writer who reads, writes and creates everyday.
To inform readers with knowledge, inspiration and encouragement."
~Susan Kaye LeopoldRemember the encouraging words of the special blue engine in the classic story, The Little Engine that Could by Watty Piper . . .
"I think I can. I think I can."
And, finally, everyone has a story to tell. Everyone has an important story to tell. You and I have stories to write and share with kids. Revisions are necessary for rereadbility. You and I have important stories to tell. Write and rewrite your story and when it is the best it can be, kids will say,
"Let's read it again!"
"The important thing about you
is that you are you."
Okay, are you feeling a little bit better? Are you feeling refreshed and renewed? Are you ottimista or pessimista? It's not always easy. You can do it. Yes, you can. Perseverance. Dedication. Stamina. Celebrate and reward yourself with your writing accomplishments.
Hopefully, you have found some encouragement to continue your writing journey with these twenty-five tips. Share your thoughts and ideas. What works for you when you are feeling stuck with your writing? How do you turn around and make a detour to avoid the dead end road?