Have you ever had a really bad case of writer’s block…well guess what…editors get it to. The overwhelming feeling of seeing your footage in bins can be stressful when you don’t know where to start – even after syncing the dailies.
Staring at a blank timeline is often a common problem because editors just don’t know where to begin. In 10 Ways to Avoid Editor’s Block from Fitness in Post, Zach Arnold talks through ten ways to remove this “editor’s block.” I found a few of them pretty useful in my own workflow, but I want to highlight on the important ones.
This first thing to do is remove distractions. This seems common problem in every work field, but still remains a distraction. Trust me, I know it’s hard, but closing out of your web browser and setting the phone far away may be the best option in order to reach a deadline. Another helpful tip I got from the podcast was to just lay something down. Start with the easiest scene in your feature or choose some selects that you know you want in your piece. Once you have a start, doing the hard cutting will start to come natural.
The last tip I want to emphasize is being able to walk away before the certain scene or section is finished. This is something I’ve always had a problem with; I couldn’t help but sit at my station and work until everything was perfect. But the thing to remember is working too long on a project will burn you out. If you sit there until everything is 100%, odds are is it’s going to be shit when you look at it later. Walking away when you think it’s almost done is best, even if it’s just for a short break. Giving yourself time to let your body get functional again will benefit in the long run. If you follow these few tips, and the rest of the steps told, your productivity should happily increase.