Writers Block

Every writer is afflicted with writers block at one time or another. It usually hits me hard when my expectations of myself get too high. As long as I keep in mind that I’m a fairly ordinary human and the limits of time and space apply to me. I don’t expect too much from myself and somehow I manage to get quite a lot done; but the minute I start thinking of myself as an adult who ‘should’ be able to do more, I crash and burn into a fiery hell of writers block.

Those aren’t the only bad patterns of though that can block me from writing. In fact I’ve found its fairly easy to throw a wrench in my writing wheels.  I have to be careful about what I read and watch on TV. If its too depressing I can set myself back. Too much stress can do the same thing. When my grandfather died, I didn’t write for weeks. Stress is stress though, after I published my first article I was so excited that it took three months before I could actually start working on my next article.

The best way to ‘fix’ writers block that I’ve found is to treat myself exactly as I would a small child. I am warm supportive and also firm. I do sit down and make myself write but I’m not cruel about it. I make sure that I have a warm blanket and a hot beverage. I bribe myself to just think about my story at the computer, with promises of an episode of my favorite show afterwords. I give myself plenty of sleep, exercise, and healthy food in an effort to promote health and lots of writing from the inside out. The biggest hurdle to this is my second thoughts which sometimes rebel at how nice I am and tell me that I should do more and quit being such a baby. But listening to those thoughts is usually what gave me the writers block in the first place so I firmly shut the door on those thoughts and continue to foster a safe atmosphere to write.

Over all, these efforts pay off. I don’t write fast. My first novel, the one that went straight in a drawer, took four years.  My first article, the one that was published, took a year from inception to publication. So yes, I’m slow, but like the turtle, I get there in the end.

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