Writer’s block is an unfortunate inevitability of the creative writing process. It can hit at any moment: when trying to come up with an idea, in the middle of the scene, or just as you’re trying to finish your story. And it can last for minutes, hours, days…or even longer. Luckily there are many tools, games, and tricks you can use to work your way out of writer’s block and get the pen moving across the paper again.
If you’re wondering how to get rid of writer’s block, you’re in the right place. From writing prompts to story games, there’s plenty of ways to get the creative juices flowing again. For this article, we’ve rounded up 7 of the best tools to help karate chop writer’s block out of your head. You’re sure to find something on this list that will work for you.
If you’re looking for a gift for a writer or aspiring author, these writer’s block killers are perfect gifts. They’re fun and help inspire creativity, which will help the writer in your life be more productive and finish their work.
Tools to Get Rid of Writer’s Block
1. Aquanotes Shower Note System
I’ve heard many writers use this trick, and it’s definitely worked for me. Whenever you’re stuck on a problem, whether its what happens next, what to do with your character, or how to plug up a plothole there are two ways that are guaranteed the get you unstuck. The first is to take a walk. The second is to take a shower. I get some of my best ideas in the shower and found the relaxing solitude is perfect for easing tense muscles–including the ones in your brain.
The big problem? You can’t write down your brilliant idea while you’re soaking wet and sudsie. And how many times have you forgotten your masterful solution by the time you’ve toweled off? Aquanotes solves that problem! This innovative notepad is waterproof and works perfectly to jot down your ideas mid-shower. That way you can move on to your next problem to solve or just focus on rinsing your hair. This also makes an exceptional gift because every writer will immediately put it to good use.
2. Writer Emergency Pack
Designed to be used when you’re having a writer’s block emergency, this pack is a tool to help save a dying story and finish writing it.
The pack comes with 26 illustrated cards to help inspire you and “unstick” your creativity. Flip the card over to read the detail side that gives suggestions and writing tips. When writer’s block attacks, just shuffle the deck, pick a card, and keep writing.
Writer Emergency pack is perfect for fiction writer’s of all ages and can also be used by screenwriters. This is a must-have creativity tool for all writers and makes a great stocking stuffer.
3. The Writer’s Block: 786 Ideas to Jump-Start Your Imagination
Try fighting your writer’s block with a literal writer’s block. This little block sized book is the perfect inspiration to get your story going again. It features hundreds of prompts that writers can flip through to jump start their next story idea or get them out of a writing rut.
The prompts inside include photos, phrases, spark words, activities to try, and writing advice from famous authors like Toni Morrison, Kurt Vonnegut, and Joyce Carol Oates. No matter how many times you reach for it, this little book will find new ways to inspire you.
4. Rory’s Story Cubes Set
This is a game originally created to foster creativity in younger writers, but it’s great to help inspire a writer of any age. These story cubes are for when you’re stumped trying to come up with a new story idea. The dice feature illustrations drawn on each side. To use them, you roll the dice and try to create a story idea incorporating all of the images. Sometimes it requires really stretching your imagination to make all of the elements come together.
The Story Cubes can be played as a game at a party or with your friends or you can use them alone to break your writer’s block and get a new story idea. There are many themed sets available so you can create the perfect collection for the types of stories you like to write.
5. The Storymatic Game
This is another game that’s perfect for inspiring creativity and new ideas. They advertise that there’s 6 trillion different dieas in this box. To play you draw cards and start to form a story using the cards you get. This is perfect as a party game or to use alone as a story prompt for a new story or novel.
When playing it as a game you can write the story, draw it, or act it out. It’s also a ton of fun to draw cards and have the whole group write stories based off of the same cards. The different types of stories to come from the same combination is always amazing and entertaining.
6. The Writer’s Toolbox: Creative Games and Exercises for Inspiring the ‘Write’ Side of Your Brain
The Writer’s Toolbox is an entire kit to aid your fight against writer’s block. This was designed by a creative writing teacher to be full of fun exercises to get you thinking creatively and inspire new thinking.
Included in the toolbox are a small book on writing and three writing games. The Sixth Sense Cards help inspire you to write rich descriptions using their vivid prompts. The Protagonist Game comes with wheels to randomly select a protagonist, their goals, obstacles, and actions. The sticks can be selected randomly to help start a story and keep it going.
Using the tools in this kit, you’re sure to foster creativity and work through any blocks and difficulties with your stories.
7. The 3 A.M. Epiphany: Uncommon Writing Exercises that Transform Your Fiction
If you’re not interested in games to inspire creativity, this book is a great option. Named after the well known fact that we get our best creative ideas at the most inconvenient times, this book is meant to help inspire you at any time.
The exercises in this book were tested and refined by Brian Kiteley through 15 years of teaching fiction. They’ll help you move past anxieties that cause writer’s block and prevent you from writing. They’ll also help improve your writing by helping you craft unique ideas and move away from stale writing patterns to innovative experimentation. Just open the book and select any exercise. Soon you’ll be typing away on your next great story.
8. Narata Storytelling Cards
When you’re short on inspiration, the Narata Storytelling Cards can give you a creative boost. Shuffle the deck and draw cards to get instant ideas for characters, plots points, or even a whole story. The deck comes with 200 cards in 10 different categories (like Character, Goal, and Event). Since you shuffle the deck and draw cards at random, it allows for limitless story possibilities.
This cool brainstorming tool is great for writers, screenwriters and anyone working in comics or advertising.
Now that you’ve destroyed writer’s block, check out the essential software for writing a novel and the reference books you should have on your desk. Read these inspirational writing quotes for an extra kick of creativity.