Sunday, April 17, 2011

Writers Blog Through Writer's Block

I don't believe in "writer's block." I believe "writer's block" is just a face-saving way of saying one of the following:

  • I don't have the skill to express, on paper, all the cool thoughts running around in my head.
  • I don't have a cool thought in my head right now; I have absolutely NOTHING worthwhile to say.
  • I want to write, but I feel guilty leaving the housework to rot.
  • It's a really pretty day out, and writing feels too much like work.
  • Truth is, I don't want to write at all. Writing's PAINFUL. I want to have written, preferably a bestselling book with a six-figure advance.

Next time you're tempted to say, "I have writer's block," ask yourself why - ask, "What do I really mean by this term, 'writer's block'?" Then, if you really want to write, address the root cause of the problem - don't moan about it. The writer with writer's block is a cliche - and any writer KNOWS that cliches are to be avoided like the...zombies created when the cook at Dan's Deli put too much preservative in the salami. (Wordy, perhaps, but "plague" would've been unintentionally ironic.)

Grab that paper and pen and WRITE!! Or leave a comment below, telling us YOUR favorite excuses NOT to write.

2 comments:

  1. I once took a freelance assignment to write "reading passages" and related test questions for a company producing a practice SAT project. The editor had Not been nearly as clear as I thought about his expectations and rejected submission after submission (practice SAT reading passages can Not have a liberal political slant, even tangentially). The project dragged on for Weeks and weeks and I just could not seem to please the guy. I finally told them I was sick with a bad case of the flu and could not finish the project. He paid me 3/5 of the agreed amount and I resolved to be Very specific in negotiating future contracts. My worse case of writer's block ever.

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  2. Oh, dear. Can they have a conservative slant? Can they advocate chastity belts?

    I actually think it would be fun to write reading passages. I can do neutral, especially if they allow fiction - which I take it, reading between your lines, they do?

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