Maybe it’s because I’ve been juggling a few other writing-related projects for the past few weeks, but I can feel writer’s block seeping into pretty much everything that I’m doing as of late. Even GMing is being hit by it, but thankfully I’ve got some notes on where I generally see the game going, and I work better by bouncing ideas off my players and running with how they react to things.
However any attempt I’ve made for the moment to actually formulate a campaign in my head is met with nothing. All I’m getting is static. I guess my muse has decided to abandon me at the moment leaving me bereft of anything interesting at the time being. Not that this hasn’t happened before, of course, GM’s writer’s block happens to every GM, and much like in writing, sometimes the only solution is to keep at it.
Writer’s block can’t be used as an excuse all the time, but it’s always good to acknowledge that a GM is a person, and not a game generating machine. As much as I’d love to think that I was some sort of GMing version of a perpetual motion machine, even I have to admit that I get dry spells now and then.
When I’m tapped out, I usually resort to media loading, binging on everything from TV to books to music. They don’t even have to share the same genre most of the time. I noticed that being able to consume different types of media is just the thing to rev up the dormant brain matter that isn’t working at the moment.
Aside from that I also draw a lot of inspiration from the stuff that my players want to see. Sometimes a helpful suggestion, or even a quick “I wish someone ran X” is enough to get my brain moving. I’m a guy who likes bouncing ideas off people, so the more I get to talk about a given concept, the more I can flesh it out. I attribute a lot of my success in my HERO and Mage games to the fact that the players talked about those a lot even between sessions.
Anyway, I’d love to hear from the rest of the GMs out there. What do you guys do to get over GM writer’s block? Is there anything in particular that works best for you?