Writer's Block Chronicles - The Fear

Here's the thing about writer's block - lots of people don't think it's a real thing.  They think it's laziness or procrastination or whatever. And you know what, maybe that's the truth for them. 

I know it's real for me, because I'm blocked right now.

Put the violins away.  This is not about seeking pity.  It's about showing how bloody frustrating it can be.

I figured I'd break my current block down into a short series of posts.  Today's is about the fear.  I'm sure you're all familiar with it - the fear you'll never be capable of writing another book ever.

I've started and stalled three projects since May.  I have some good real life reasons, but mostly I just don't feel like writing.  And that's a perfectly good reason to go and do something else instead. 

But sometimes the fear kicks in. 

...I can't write.
...I don't want to write.
...What if I never write again?
...What if I really do only have one story to tell?
...Maybe I'm not good enough.
...Why don't I seem to care as much as all those other writers online?
...Why aren't I as disciplined?
...Here's three empty hours in my day.  Why aren't I using them to write?
...If I never become an author, what do I do with my life?

You could use the fear, sure.  Real life experience adds depth to writing for sure.  But when the plots have suddenly dried up, it feels a bit pointless trying to do force anything out.

If you're feeling the fear of writer's block now, you're not alone.  Don't be afraid or ashamed.  We all get scared sometimes, and I'm thinking we probably all get stuck too.
 
However, if you're not blocked right now but would like to experience some fear, sit in a dark room and listen to the following:


Just don't blame me for any nightmares, okay? ;)

I'll be back later in the week with more tales of writing woe, but there will be joy and inspiration too! Hooooooray for optimism!!!

Comments

  1. It's so good to see it written down, made clear, that someone else feels the exact same way as I do. It really gets me down when people say writer's block is just laziness; sometimes you just need to take a break to recharge your creative batteries. But then I feel guilty, and the guilt stops me writing. But probably most of all, it's the 'why don't I seem to care as much' issue. I think we all need to stop judging ourselves by other people's standards. Hmm.. easier said than done!

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    1. Yeah, the guilt is a real pain in the arse too.

      It's all easier said than done, but it's good knowing we're all going through it and can support each other :)

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  2. Absolutely what Angeline said--you are your own writer, and you do things your own way, for reasons that are particular to you. Some people write like their lives depend upon it. Others are more measured, and have other priorities (and perhaps other things they enjoy as much) in life, so their output is not as prolific.

    Given that, how you cope with writer's block is also personal. Someone else's technique might work for you, or you may have to come up with something unique. Maybe taking an extended break will work. Or writing blog articles. Or writing fan fiction. Or writing whatever comes into your head, no matter how mundane, trivial, and trashy. Or entering writing contests. Or something else!

    What I think should give you hope, Cole, is how much you're concerned about never writing again. Ironically, I think that's what'll eventually get you back into it. :)

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    1. Real life is a major factor in my slow down. I just need to rediscover a good balance.

      Thanks for the support, Colin ^_^

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  3. I'm with Colin: fan fiction is a great way for me to get out of a rut. It's like normal writing, but with all the hard work taken out! I've written some truly godawful fan fiction in my time. I don't think the writers of Supernatural will be contacting me any time soon.

    But it's fun, and even if it's not "real" writing, it keeps you treading water instead of feeling like you're drowning. Flash fiction prompts also help.

    I was exactly where you are about four months ago: I will never write another thing again. And this months I'm crazy productive again. It will happen for you -- you've got too much passion to let it beat you. :)

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    1. Fanfiction has been calling me lately. I have written a lot of it in the past and you're right - it could definitely help me out of my rut.

      Thanks for sharing, Jen. It's really good to know I'm not alone.

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  4. Everybody deals with it differently, but's certainly a real thing to me. The last time I had it, I started writing diary entries to my Block. Sounds weird, but it worked. They were mostly of the, "Dear Block, why do you thwart me so?" variety but it helped get those frustrations out and kickstart the creativity again. And "Silent Hill" scared me to death. I only played it once! :)

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    1. That's a really unique way of tackling it!

      Silent Hill gave me many nightmares the first time around. I had to sleep with a light on!

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  5. Good luck with the block. It is very real and very irritating! Maybe a chance to take a breath and just read for a while until the inspiration comes back.

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    1. Taking a break is definitely helping.

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