Zabowska's Blog

November 3, 2009

Writer’s Block

Filed under: Uncategorized — zabowska @ 11:11 pm

Many writers suffer from writer’s block.  Blocking occurs when a writer has been
writing and then all of a sudden (s)he can’t for whatever reason.

  Most writers experience this feeling on and off with their writing. It is
frustrating and downright gut wrenching for some. And writer’s block usually
continues for a prolonged period of time, making it even more frustrating.
   For many writers, the reasons why they are blocked are not immediately
apparent. They just feel frustrated because one day they wake up and they simply
cannot write. No matter what they do, how many incentives they give themselves,
no words are generated. This is really hard to cope with for many writers.

  A block usually occurs for writers when they are on a writing path. For instance,
for some writers, blocks arise when they are in the middle of writing a novel. All of
a sudden, they don’t know which way they should go next. It almost feels as if the
words dry up. A block can be conceptualized as a snarl of complex psychological
fears and anxieties.

  Here are a few ways that writers can manage writer’s block.

1.  Don’t cling to what you have written. Stay light. Start a new book and write
through to the end without hesitation. Don’t look back. That is why I find the
National Novel Writing Month so great as an incentive to get the words down
quickly. Then I can go back and revise.

2.  If you are blocked, you might make terrible choices. If you think you are
blocked, don’t make important decisions about the manuscript. For instance, don’t
throw out your book when you are blocked or delete chapters. You may erroneously
delete good writing.

3.  Construct your life so that you stay unblocked. Don’t wait for a block to learn
how to remain unblocked. For instance, some writers who are blocked have chaotic
lives. Sometimes their finances are out of control. Other times, they feel that
they should be taking better care of their health. To make sure that you don’t get
blocked too many times, it is essential to have the other parts of your life in place.

4.  Surround yourself with people who are already who you want to be. A lot of
times being around successful writers is a really great way to boast your spirits as
a writer and to keep going when faced with difficulties. I find that to be the case
for me. Some of my critique groups help me to keep on going when I feel very
overwhelmed by negative emotions. It is also so wonderful to hear if one of them
gets published.

5.  Write the books that you want to write, not the ones you think that you should
write. Donne McDinne has always said, Write what inspires you. That is great
advice. If what you write doesn’t inspire you, you won’t keep at for long.

6.  Square your commitment to writing with your goals. For instance, can you sit
long enough to write a book in a year? Have you developed the skills necessary to
write a book? Only if you have can you plan on writing a book.

7.  Do not write alone. Find allies and writing buddies that can help propel you along.
You could also share feelings of despair in your writing and merely talking about it
can help you tremendously. Having writer friends is the most effective way to
continue writing through writer’s block.

So, why not try and overcome writer’s block.


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