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Writing Tips: Writer's Block

"What is something that you do to keep yourself motivated to write when you feel discouraged or have writer's block?"

The answer depends upon whether I'm in the middle of a project, or between projects. If I get writer's block while working on a book, that's a sign that I need to take a step back and reconsider the fundamentals of the story. Often, the problem stems from not knowing the characters well enough, so I'll revisit their character worksheets and make sure I'm crystal clear on their hopes, their fears, and what's standing between them and what they want.

If I'm in between projects (as I was recently after wrapping up my fourth book) and don't know what to write next, or don't feel motivated to write, then I try to recharge my creative tank with other activities: take walks, hang out with friends, go to a museum, binge-watch TV, or listen to music (especially that last one; I get a lot of inspiration from songs!)

- Karen McManus


Karen McManus, photo credit: Kaitlyn Litchfield

About The Author: Karen M. McManus is the author of the New York Times and international bestselling young adult novels One of Us Is Lying and Two Can Keep a Secret. Her work has been translated into 40 languages worldwide. Karen lives in Massachusetts and holds a master's degree in Journalism from Northeastern University, which she mostly uses to draft fake news stories for her novels.

You can find Karen at @writerkmc on Twitter and Instagram.


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