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Writer's Block: Web Designers Worst Nightmare

Mar 10, 2008
Writer's block is something that those engaged in the creative arts should be very familiar with. Unfortunately, web designers are not immune to this affliction.

There will inevitably be times when you have absolutely no idea how you should proceed with your project, and cannot continue your work until you receive some form of inspiration or direction.

There are, however, several methods that are useful for overcoming writer's block. Enclosed herein are six tips that may prove useful in helping you invent new ideas and return to your normal, productive self.

1. Prepare for procrastination. You will often find that once you have received a new assignment or project, and have to begin formulating new ideas for use in the project, your mind will begin to wander.

You will likely end up having the most trivial thoughts, about your next holiday, or watching television, or of other equally trivial things. This is one of the forms that procrastination often takes.

You should, however, realize that these thoughts represent activities that you want to carry out. If you understand this, then you will be able to redirect your thoughts away from them.

Create a schedule and plan time for each activity that you want to do. After doing this you will find that your mind focus less upon those activities and you will be able to devote more of your attention to the work that you have to do.

2. Avoid starting work from the beginning. Starting to work your way down from the top of a page that you are designing can be demoralizing, as it emphasizes how much you have left to do.

However, if you start somewhere in the middle of the page that you are supposed to design, then your mind tends to be less stressed about the size of your project. Of course, HTML or CSS coding must still be done from the very beginning.

When dealing with web design, however, many designers find it easier to get the most important part of the project out of the way first, after which you can adopt a more leisurely pace to complete the rest of your work.

3. Create a paper draft of your design plan. It is not uncommon to see web designers creating rough drafts off their design plans with pen and paper. Although this is a fading trend, creating a rough design on paper can still prove useful to many designers who are having problems.

Writers trying to complete a project entirely within the framework of HTML or JavaScript tend to have problems with relating the abstract code of programming to the actual design that should be the result.

Drafting your design on paper is hardly difficult, and edits are simple and easy to make. If you are not satisfied with your work, simply throw your draft away and start on a new one.

4. Planning is important! The one thing that is most often taken for granted when designers start on a project is planning. Planning is absolutely essential in helping a designer meet goals and aims, and ultimately to produce a good piece of work. Too many designers simply start on individual pages for a project without thinking the entire project through first.

Over-budgeting, late submissions, or even sub-par work all are likely outcomes of failure to plan. Your web design company is not likely to appreciate you falling prey to any of the above problems. Thus it is in your best interests to take the time to plan a project properly. Spending some time to plan your course of work will not be nearly as expensive as the consequences of failing to plan.

5. If you need help, ask for it. Pride or ego should never stand in the way of your asking someone else for help if you really need it. There are always those who will happily help you with your problems or give you constructive advice and criticism.

Choose the people you approach for help with care, however, because some people have absolutely no interest in helping and may even end up hurting you or taking advantage of you instead. Learn to identify those who are sincere about offering you a helping hand. And if in the future they find themselves in need of your help, remember what they have done for you.

6. If all else fails, stop. If none of the other methods of curing writer's block have worked for you, stop. Drop everything that you are currently doing and do something else for a while.

Relax and allow your mind to recharge. It is not uncommon for designers to find inspiration in the most unlikely of places and at the most unexpected times.
About the Author
Moe Tamani is a SEO web design consultant Dallas Web Design.
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