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Writing Poetry Help: Getting Through Writer's Block

By Gary R. Hess. Category: Poetry

To help with writing, I have composed a list of helpful tips and tricks to aid with writer's block and to improve your writing.

  • Try a different point of view. Write a poem which is the exact opposite of what you believe in, while not using irony.
  • Write in different places. Try bringing a notebook with you when you go to the park, or sitting on the train to work. Just use the influence of your surrounding to help your inspiration.
  • Try "flushing". This is when you write anything that comes into your mind as fast as you can for a minute, any word, phrase or sentence. After the time is up, go back through your work and see if anything pops out that you want to write about, if not, that's up to you. The point of flushing is to get rid of the garbage which is holding your mind back.
  • Go to poetry readings (or host your own). This is a great chance to enhance your knowledge of current poetry and learn what others enjoy. It's also a great place to meet fellow poets.
  • Create a dream journal. Often, dreams lead to thoughts which never would have been uncovered during consciousness. Write what the dream was about, then at a later date, come back to the dream and read what happened, it might just be this is the inspiration you need for your next best writing.
  • If you create a poem you really like, try writing another on the same topic. Maybe your creative juices are flowing, or maybe you were at your peak. There's only one way to find out.
  • Don't hold back your fears. If something has happened or you're afraid of happening, write about it.

Extra Tips for Continuing to Write Poetry

Once you break out of writer's block, it's important to not slip back into it. Consider these helpful tips.

  • When you are reading a poem that you dislike, find out why. This could help better your own writing by improving on those aspects.
  • If you write a bad poem, don't give up. Even great poets have written hundreds, if not thousands, badly. Just keep writing.
  • Learn from your criticism. Don't necessarily live by it, but learn from it. Everyone has a different perspective on a poem, one person may like it and the next hate it.
  • If you ever wish to have your poem published, submit them now. Because sooner or later it must be done. Most people who don't get published during their life never will be, it's not unheard of, but the Emily Dickinson's of the world are rare and far between.
  • To help with criticism, try joining a poetry group or creating your own. To help get started, list your group in a local arts publication, many are free to do so.
  • Publish a poetry journal. Not only will it get the word out about your writing, but it will help you improve by encouraging you to write.

Hopefully these tips will help you through those tough times. Whatever you do, just keep writing!