Thursday, March 18, 2010

Quotes to Think About - Writer's Block

How many of us writers out there have found ourselves blaming the ever elusive Writer's Block for our lack of word count? I know I have. It is quite frustrating when you know you want to write, yet as soon as you finally sit down to do so, no words come. Or worse, when you have all together lost that urge to even try. Again, I raise my hand, admitting I have been there. In fact, I try to claim I still call that residence. But the truth is: What IS writer's block? Is it an actual mental issue...or just a term, a blame we have created to make an excuse for our no longer trying?

In the intro to The Writer's Book of Matches, the author includes some very interesting quotes about this very topic to think on.

"...a noisy inner critic (or an even noisier next door neighbor), a story that you won't allow to come out and play, troubling circumstances, insomnia, or myriad other things thrown in your path. ..." (Jenna Glatzer, Outwitting Writer's Block)

"...fear of failure, fear of success, literary fogginess, and wrong direction..." (Nancy Kress, Beginnings, Middles, and Ends)

"I think you have overindulged yourself on a steady diet of baloney for far too long. Why do writers think they have the privilege of a special dispensation for not working? What is this mysterious white lie known as writer's block? Face it - if you're not writing, it can only be because you're too lazy or you don't know what you're doing." (James V. Smith, Fiction Writer's Brainstormer)

Pretty powerful quotes, yet at the same time...anything ringing true in your mind? Writer's Block isn't a disease, its a mindset. "Try defining it as the absence of inspiration." (Writer's Book of Matches) And the cure? Move on! Try a new story, a new idea. If you find yourself joining me in this rut I reside in, try a prompt or twenty. The thing is, if you DO love writing, then write. Finding an excuse to not do it only leads you to the question: Why am I even trying? Looks like its time to re-examine that plot. Rethink that antagonist. Step away completely and work on something new. But, my friends, if you truly love this art, it is never time to give up.

So let's say goodbye to Writer's Block. And start letting our mind run away again with new ideas. It IS possible.

Goodbye rut, hello creation.