Help ! Unable to write.

Hello guys, im having trouble writing. :no:
I have put in almost three years in researching and developing a story but i am not able to put a single word on paper. Im perfectly normal and sane when it comes to discussions, development and also visualization but when it comes to writing the screenplay i feel some unease.
I know it might sounds a bit odd that im posting my inability to write in a writing forum but your suggestions will really help me start my career. Thanks in advance. :thumbsup:
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff member
Admin
I am not a cynical person but if you have been working on this 3 years and have not been able to put one word to paper you may not be a writer.

You may be a creative person though. Like in the credits, "Created by..."

Perhaps you should get a writing partner that lays down the ink while you create and dictate/spitball ideas...
 

pedramyz

Member
@sfoster Yep, i do have the entire story summed up with the start middle and the end.
Hi, I had the exact same problem. What fixed the issue for me was to just put the pen on paper and start writing whatever came to my mind while thinking about my story at the back of my mind. Don't try to write everything as perfect as possible,that is one of the things that creates writer's block in my opinion. Just imagine a scene and bring your characters into them. Write whatever dialogue that comes to your mind that you think fits your story. once you have done that and written the first draft for a scene, everything gets easier, your vision becomes clearer and better ideas come to your mind to replace with the ones you already wrote. So my suggestion to you is not to worry about the quality of your first or second drafts. Just write. Your material doesn't have to be necessarily relevant to your story in the first draft. Just get them out! write them on paper.
Once you have done that, start reading your stuff and almost unconsciously you'll realize which parts need to be replaced or deleted ( If of course you have a clear story line in your mind).

That's what helped me to overcome that challenge. I hope it works for you too.
 

seanmannion

Member
I'm going to echo the "just write" advice. It sounds like you've spent so much time and energy on your prep to write that you may have psyched yourself out a little about the actual writing. Take a deep breath, maybe a swig or three of whiskey, open your screenwriting software and start typing.

You're probably not going to like what comes out at first. Especially with all that prep, you're going to be wondering how it's not all just ready to go yet. That's fine. That's normal. Don't stop until you get a draft done. Keep going even if it's awful. Keep going even if you go off plan. Get the draft done. Get it on "paper."

You have to embrace that it's not going to work exactly the way you want right now and just power through it. You can always rewrite it after.
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff member
Admin
Turn the outline into a skeleton.

You have a basic outline. Bulk it up with details, and write scenes in using brief descriptions and no dialogue unless you have some killer lines you need to note. Keep bulking up until you have a complete story. Now you have a skeleton and you are ready to put this into screenplay format with action and dialog.
 
Hi, I had the exact same problem. What fixed the issue for me was to just put the pen on paper and start writing whatever came to my mind while thinking about my story at the back of my mind. Don't try to write everything as perfect as possible,that is one of the things that creates writer's block in my opinion. Just imagine a scene and bring your characters into them. Write whatever dialogue that comes to your mind that you think fits your story. once you have done that and written the first draft for a scene, everything gets easier, your vision becomes clearer and better ideas come to your mind to replace with the ones you already wrote. So my suggestion to you is not to worry about the quality of your first or second drafts. Just write. Your material doesn't have to be necessarily relevant to your story in the first draft. Just get them out! write them on paper.
Once you have done that, start reading your stuff and almost unconsciously you'll realize which parts need to be replaced or deleted ( If of course you have a clear story line in your mind).

That's what helped me to overcome that challenge. I hope it works for you too.
Finding forrester :)
 
@pedramyz Sounds interesting. Will try this. How about a beat sheet? Will that be of any help? And yes like you mentioned I am looking to perfect in the first draft itself because of all the research and time i have put in, that is also something which is keeping me away from writing.
 

sfoster

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
@sfoster Yep, i do have the entire story summed up with the start middle and the end.
Great! you're ready to start writing. Now you need to set a goal everyday.
You can start out small if you want.. ONE PAGE A DAY for the next ten days.

Goals are important, they keep us productive on a time table.
That's reasonable right? Start even smaller today. Write the opening scene.
 

pedramyz

Member
Great! you're ready to start writing. Now you need to set a goal everyday.
You can start out small if you want.. ONE PAGE A DAY for the next ten days.
and yes sfoster mentioned a really important thing, YOU NEED TO SET A GOAL everyday! whatever you do please don't stop writing for one day until you finish your script. once you trick yourself into thinking that "I need to be inspired to write and if I'm not inspired I'm not going to write anything." You won't be able to write anything at all. I procrastinated the process of my writing for 3 years because of this wrong mind-set.I finally managed to finish the script because I had a deadline to send my script and believe or not that pressure "that I have to finish it before the deadline" got me going in writing . Most of the time creativity and inspiration is associated with writing and writing and writing. Of course talent is important too but I assure you even the greatest writers came up with most of their great ideas DURING the writing process and not before.

So yeah start writing and don't worry about anything.
 
@pedramyz @sforster @indietalk

Thank you guys for your support. Im taking your valuable inputs and putting it to use starting now.
Will keep you guys updated. And also please share any other inputs or tips you guys want me to keep in mind.
 
Writing is my bread and butter. You have to approach it with inspiration and a full mind of passionate characters and personal life experiences. How you observe the world is key. Watch the news, read, discover secrets around epic monumental locations through research. Listen to songs or paint or go to the gym to vent if you get writers block and I promise something amazing will come out of your head. It starts with one word, love, then one letter in front of the other. It’s okay to jump around. If you have the end, then start writing backwards from the end. Your biggest critic will always be yourself. Start writing poetry to free your mind.
 

Panos

Member
What might help you is to have this mindset: don't try to write a screenplay but try to describe the movie you already have in mind. Write freely just what you would see on screen. Then you can read other screenplays to balance the structure.
 

The Tune Peddler

Pro Member
indiePRO
There's a great quote in a great book called “Art and Fear” by David Bayles and Ted Orland,

"You make good work by (among other things) making lots of work that isn't very good, and gradually weeding out the parts that aren't good....”

What approach work for me when writing music (or anything else) is simply to sit down and start. Don't judge what comes out or worry about what it will be like when it's finished. That stuff will slow you down incredibly fast. It feels good and is inspiring to just keep moving forwards. And, obviously, you can always go back and fix something or even throw something out you didn't like.
 

WalterB

Member
No great piece of art in the world is a perfect first draft.

Don't let perfectionism cloak your procrastination.
You are afraid of failing and fear kills creativity.

As soon as you realise that the only failure is to not write, you'll be fearless enough to start writing.
And then rewrite and rewrite untill it is good.

Unless the real problem is that you have your plot, but your characters don't really live. If you made them pawns to your plot, then you don't know what to write, because you don't know how they think or act.

Anyway.
Start writing.
You can't write wrong things. The first drafts are like Bob Ross paintings: no mistakes, only happy accidents. :)
 

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