Writers Block…

“Many artists (myself included) believe that creativity is a mysterious process over which we have no real control. We’re more like antennae that, if attuned, can pick up the creative atmosphere.”  ~ Kevin Kaiser

My antennae is broken…

http://www.flickr.com/photos/drewcoffman/4815205740/

I feel like this guy.  Tons of ideas in my head but I just. can’t. get. them. out!  Words have eluded me.

I used to just write whenever the mood strikes and then quit when the mood left.  I so badly want to finish this first draft of my book but I just sit down and stare at the computer.  The first 30,000 words flowed like water.   The next 20,000 were more sparing.  Now, I feel like my brain is stuck in the mud.  Like my creativity is spinning it’s wheels, hung up on an unseen object.  The most frustrating thing is that the ideas are all there, just not the words.

As I wrote this blog I was on Facebook too.  My Aunt, who also writes, sent me a message and we chatted for a bit.  I mentioned the writers block and she asked me straight up: “Have you been revising as you write, or pure first-drafting?”

I admitted that I’ve been revising as I go (already realizing it was something I needed to change).  My Aunt then said:

Write or Edit

So, I’ll take my brilliant Aunt’s advice and go do some ‘bad writing’ or pure first-drafting.  I’m actually looking forward to it.  The words that flowed at the beginning were pure first-drafting and then I got hung up on revising.  Hope the words flow again.

Do you ever struggle with writers block?  Wanting to write so badly but not being able to?  What do you do when writers block hits?  I’d love to hear from you!  Please share this if you think someone would benefit from reading this!

Sarah

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13 thoughts on “Writers Block…

  1. Rowan says:

    But! But but! I need your help, because when I write badly I get irritated and not like my writing and scrap EVERYTHING I’ve written and just start over! So in the end, I’m blank anyways! What do I do? I haven’t written my next chapter in ages (three weeks) because I think I’m waiting? I don’t even know for what… Every once in a while i get these bursts of inspiration and write good chapters and then I have to wait for the next chapter… Any advice?

    • sarahssundry says:

      Rowan, thanks for commenting. I’ve been there before. I think the most important thing is, don’t scrap it. If you write it and don’t like it then change it. Give it a few days if you are tempted to delete it all. There’s an idea in there if you can write chapters. Every author out there doesn’t like something. Revise and edit if it keeps you from deleting. One of my favourite blogs to follow is this one: http://storysellerpro.com/ I’ve mentioned a few of the sweetest posts in one of my earlier blog posts (https://sudryandspecific.wordpress.com/2012/08/23/creative-inspiration/) but I love what he tells me time and time again. “Stories die every day because the work of making something happen is brutal.” Kevin Kaiser says:

      Intention.

      Nothing happens until something happens. Yes, thank you, Captain Obvious. Yet, as simple as it sounds, many writers falter here. Intention is the steel stake that you sink deep into the ground then cement into place as a mark of your will. It’s not moved by stormy weather, the fickleness of the wind, or the shifting tides. It is a firm and clear and solid choice to move forward and finish no matter what. It’s the conviction that you will call those things that are not as though they were until they are.

      So my friend, if you have an idea then write it. Keep writing. Even if not everything is gold, it’s in there. You mentioned procrastination in your blog. Today is the first day you will say no to procrastination. Sit down and write a chapter. Send out the antennae and let creativity flow! Don’t wait. And don’t delete it!

      Did that help at all? 🙂

  2. Rowan says:

    O+O my goodness, I just finish writing my comment and I notice that you’ve read my blog!

  3. Colleen says:

    Nice. I like what you did with my suggestion (although I can’t call this posting “bad writing”!)
    Actually, whichever way it works for you is fine. Revise, or don’t revise. But if the way you’re working is no longer working, change it up 🙂 So, no mistakes to realize, and no criticism intended.
    Rowan, I have spent plenty of time waiting for next chapters. Usually what helps is if I do some outlining or storyboarding or write down what my character thinks is going on, or something that doesn’t feel like “writing”, but keeps me working on the story. At least then the waiting time is productive.

    • sarahssundry says:

      Love it! Thanks Auntie Colleen! I know that you intended no criticism and you weren’t telling me I was making mistakes, but I know that it wasn’t working for me at all. I just needed someone to tell me that.

      I agree with what she says too Rowan. Outlining or storyboarding are great tools for when you’re stumped!

  4. Hi Sarah! Thanks for commenting on my post and leaving a link to yours. You got me. I revise every single letter as I am writing it. Your aunts advice was one gigantic palm to forehead for me! Thanks so much and I’m glad we “met”!!!!

    • sarahssundry says:

      Hi Marc. 🙂 I’m so glad that I (and my aunt) were able to help. I wasn’t sure when I commented on your post that I would be of any help at all so I am glad you got something from it. I’m glad we ‘met’ too. I liked your post and got a lot from the people who responded to it as well. Good luck!

  5. […] Writers Block… (sudryandspecific.wordpress.com) […]

  6. Sarah,
    One of the things that got me on the daily practice bandwagon in the first place was a workshop I took with Nino Ricci. He said that when he wrote his first draft of anything, that he was just writing to get the thoughts out. He didn’t care about grammar, voice, style, or any of it. Then he said something that made me think thoughts 😛 He said that he often threw out that first draft, or, at the least, that he didn’t look at it at all when writing the second.
    So Rowan can feel perfectly fine tossing the lot if she needs to 🙂
    Just got my mental panties in a bunch, so to speak. Some R&R should straighten things out.

    • sarahssundry says:

      Great point Melanie! Everyone works differently for sure. It seemed to me that Rowan wasn’t happy about scrapping it all. That’s why I mentioned it. Thanks for a different point of view! Hope you get that R&R you want!
      ~Sarah

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