I’ve never felt blocked when it comes to writing in the sense of not having ideas, but there are plenty of times when I just don’t feel enough passion or motivation to type them out even though they are bouncing around the inside of my skull trying to break free. Grabbing a pen and notebook though is always a quick and easy workaround for me.

Part of it is because the words flow a lot easier when I hand write things and the other reason is that I have a lot of confidence in my pen and trusty notebook. I’ve written five novels since 2003. The first draft of the third one was handwritten in five notebooks in four months when I decided to keep going and finish the 11k word NaNo draft I’d written. The other four were written in and on a combination of notebooks and a laptop.

Right now I’ve got 18 pages of a sci-fi short story just waiting for me to finish it, edit it, type it up, and then throw it out into the world. It might not always work, but if you find yourself with a rigid brain and rigid fingers that won’t fly across the keyboard grab a pen and notebook and see if you can get the words flowing again.

Steve Howard is a novelist, stand up comedian, and teacher living in Japan. Visit Steve at StevenBHowWrites.com.
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Steve Howard is a novelist, stand up comedian, and teacher living in Japan. Visit Steve at StevenBHowWrites.com.

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