RSS Feed

Motivational Mondays: Buckle Up!

“Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”
— E.L. Doctorow

Hopping along the 1Romance Blog Tour this weekend, Victor J. Banis’ post got me thinking about the dark we write in and ways to allow light to come in. I’ve always loved the Doctorow quote above. Being a panster plotter blend, I tend to keep about three chapters in my mental headlights.

Sometimes, I still get lost from a wrong turn or get stalled in a ditch with a flat. When this happens, its so easy to give in to panic and frustration, thinking, “this should be easier!” or wondering “why can’t I find my way?” It isn’t like we can grab a cell phone and call writers AAA. So, what do we do?

Here are a few ideas that work for me:

-Step away from the vehicle! Take a break, call a friend, read a good book, something, anything that will allow you to get some perspective.

-Pop the trunk and get out your tools. When you’re too stubborn to walk away, dig in and find your tools. Chances are, you know how to get out of the situation and it is an easier solution than you first imagine.

-Flag down some help. Figure out your question and then ask your fellow writers. Your critique partners. Utilize the loops your on. Don’t be shy to ask for help when you really need it.

-Floor it! Maybe the detour will turn out to be a better road. Maybe to get out of the ditch all you need to do is press the pedal to the floor and force that creative vehicle back onto a road, any road.

How about you, reader? What tricks have you learned to get back on the creative road?

:}Amber Scott



About Amber Scott Project

Amber Scott writes romance across time and genre with three things in common: fate, love and complications. You can find her erotica titles at

12 responses »

  1. I loved that quote, and great ideas for motivation 🙂
    Sometimes, when I get frustrated (and this does happen quiet a bit, especially when I’m revising) I remind myself what made me do all this in the first place; the passion and love I have towards storytelling. It helps to go back to basics when it gets overwhelming!

  2. Kelly Anderson

    I tend to nap, cause let’s face it….napping is freaking awesome! I find when my brain relaxes, I dream about the plot problem or something else entirely that will spark a new thought. Just recharging for a short, or in my case a long nap is what I need. Even if I wake up and am still frustrated with the problem, it makes it easier to move onto something else for awhile instead of continually beating my head against the same tree. Doing something mindless around the house is often just as effective. When the hands are busy and only part of my attention is needed, then my mind roams….sometimes right into the story to untangle the problem.

    But that’s just me….

    • Amber Scott Project

      Ah, napping. I think you’re so right. Somehow, when you’re drifting off and your brain is shifting into dreamland, ideas blossom. Thanks, Kelly!

  3. Varina Martindale

    Good post. I’m also a pantser who plots a little. Sometimes just reading a writing article or blog can refuel my story, maybe by alerting me to why I’m stalled or by giving me a new perspective on my story and how to commmunicate it. A couple days ago I opened a lecture packet from an online class, which I won last year and started to read but didn’t finish, and now I’m alternating going through the lectures, including working the exercises, with acting on critique feedback or writing part of my unfinished wip. Also having more than one project to work on helps. I have a long, rambling novel I’m writing just for myself, never to be marketed, which I pull out when everything else has stopped, and i’ll let myself work on that for a few days sometimes, while the stories I intend to show others grow in the back of my head. It’s sort of a writing equivalent to your suggestion to step away from the vehicle, which lets me feel like I’m not standing still writing-wise.

    • Amber Scott Project

      Hi Varina! I love the idea of having something that is just for you. Thanks for coming by today!

  4. I usually take a scene I’ve already written and write it again from someone else’s point of view. it gives me a new view on my characters and usually it helps to figure out what to do next.

  5. Donna Del Grosso

    Nice blog. I have used the analogy of getting lost in the fog since I began writing. “Writer’s block” indicates a block wall- sometimes insurmountable. But the fog? It will always lift1 it makes it easier to get through those tough “what do I do now?” moments!

  6. Right now, it’s after dark, I’m in the fog, a storm’s rolling in, and neither my headlights nor windshield wipers are working.

    What does seem to be helping a tiny bit though, is reminding myself of how badly I want to finish this series in the next six months, and I’m not even close. I’ve forced myself to write about anything at all just to get the creative juices flowing, and it seems to at least be making the dashboard flicker. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: