Some may call this phenomenon "writer's block." I do not. Because my number one rule of what NOT to do when you are stuck is say, "Gee, I have writer's block." Don't do that. You know that saying, acceptance is the first step to recovery? I'm telling you to cling to denial like the sun don't shine. Because admitting you have writer's block means mentally accepting you have some valid external reason for being unable to write.
There is never any valid external reason for being unable to write except a) the second coming of Christ or b) you have a real life emergency.
You're going to think I'm a hypocrite now since I've complained of the midway slump, and I've definitely mentioned having a hard time writing before. But there are two reasons for any time I'm struggling to write and neither of them are because some magic wall landed in my brain space. One, a simple case of bad planning, and I haven't figured out what's happening next--ergo, I cannot write. Or two, I'm being lazy.
It's usually two. I'm usually staring at the screen at an utter loss of words, but this is not writer's block. This is me being unwilling to unhook the internet or get to a place where I can't be distracted.
So what do I do when I run into situation one or two?
Sometimes, the best solution is to take a break. Sometimes, you really are burnt out after many days of straight writing, and if you are forced to go on, you might accidentally stab your MC with a magically available fork and prematurely end the story. But the key to this tactic is to do it in moderation, and to only take a break for one day. Got it? One day. If you take a break for more than one day, it's going to be unimaginably hard for you to get back into the swing of things. For this one day vacation, you should not think about your novel, and you should not feel guilty you're not working on it. Then, you wake up the next day happy and refreshed, put your butt back in the chair, and voila! Problem solved.
Otherwise, you can try writing something else. For me, fanfiction is an excellent outlet in this case. I can write a nice little one-shot, and by the time I'm done, I'm all ready to return to my novel. This way, you are still writing and honing your skills. Meanwhile, your novel is percolating merrily in the back of your head (even though you are not aware of it). The thing that was bothering you before might not be bothering you anymore when you return.
Sadly, the third way and the best way is something most people don't want to hear. It's just to find a nice corner without free wifi, drug yourself up with lots of coffee, and keep going at it. It's going to feel like hitting yourself repeatedly in the forehead with a brick, but eventually, eventually, you'll weather it out and things will be easier again.
Mostly, I go with the third option. It's the most productive. And even if you're writing crap, at least you're writing. Get it all down on paper first, worry about the technicalities later. You can't revise something that isn't there.
Monday: Somewhere Nowhere In My Kingdom
Wednesday: Lin Wang - Teen Writer
Thursday: Sometimes Helpful Nonsense
Friday: Girl With A Notebook
Now. I have done my hair up in Selena Gomez curls, and I mean to go to as many public places as I can possibly hit before the party tonight. No point in dressing up if I can't show the world. I'm even going to write in a public place. So I look like a cool, stylish author. Hmm...contemplating the correct choice in heels for this day. Expect pictures from the luau.