So how can I say that? Because yes, there are days that I can sit at the computer and the words don't come. Other days, different things become more important and I put off the writing because it's hard. It's not writer's block. It's anxiety of my own making.
Writing a book, a poem, a novella, a short story, is a scary proposition. You put yourself out there, expose your emotions, your story, personal story. The anxiety of that can be overwhelming. My anxiety stems from the fact that I'm rewriting my former second book in the series called She Wulf. I'm using part of the original story and expanding on it to now fit in the new series arc. It's a daunting project and in a way, I'm tied to the series, and have to work within these new parameters.
There's been a lot of that thing called writer's block, that thing that doesn't really exist. So how do I get past it. I write. I'm not talking about amusing, well written, ready to publish writing either. I'm talking about raw, nearly outlining, crap. Stuff I wouldn't bother to show my best of friends.
Being a writer is just that. We write. Even though this is essentially a re-write, it is truly a new book that has to do more than one thing. It has to link all of the books together, it has to explain a lot of unexplained plot points, it has to be an interesting story. And when I struggle to sit down and write chapter 9 because in all other incarnations of the book, this scene was always troublesome and never worked well, I had to seriously look at how I put this scene together.
It took me two days to work through the problem and only tonight was I able to really figure out how it happens. It's a pivotal scene. It moves the story from here to there, it had to be right. It also stinks. The writing is poor, but the story is the way it needs to be.
I truly believe there is no such thing as Writer's Block. After working on my fourth book, I understand that when I'm blocked, it has more to do with anxiety of the scene I'm setting up. When I understand that I have the ability to forgive myself for taking my time, for wasting time away from the book. And when I release some of the anxiety I can I ultimately always do, return to the book and write past the block.
I think it's the same with anything in life. New experiences can cause us to put things off because we're uncomfortable. Or we can feel stuck at a job, or just feeling the blues. It happens. Life is tricky and I think the key to working past the bumps whether its life or writing books is to believe in yourself, believe in your vision or in my case my story, and chip away little by little at the problem or the plot point that isn't working.
Or in some cases, completely re-write the book to make it work. Don't settle. You are worth the effort.Continue reading
I've been blocked for days. I'm editing a book and writing a second. I had hoped to be done with the second book by now, the problem is, that book wasn't going well. I scrapped it again because it's just not coming out the way I wanted it to and now I've been unmotivated and even when I sit down to write, the words aren't coming. I'm mentally exhausted. In the last year since releasing She Wulf, I've been on an up and down roller coaster of emotion and self-doubt. I haven't been able to focus on which book should be the second in the series. Where do I go from here?
Just for fun I looked up writer's block on You Tube. I didn't watch the entire video, I simply have no patience for it, but what I did get from it is this, give yourself permission to write garbage. It's the idea that the way to break through the block is to simply write. Books don't get written if words aren't put to paper.
Who hasn't put too much pressure on themselves as they attempt to fulfill their dreams. I'm feeling that pressure. I'm overly critical and have developed a fear of losing my hold on my dream. To keep that hold, I work every day. I write something everyday, I work on Twitter, and Facebook at the expense of my children and my relationships and myself. I've lost my balance and now I'm blocked.
When we feel paralyzed by fear or uncertainty, the key to pulling ourselves out of our funk is to create junk, jump into a problem with both feet without analyzing it or over thinking it. Just do it. I think I've heard that somewhere before. The most important plan is to just write it, just do it, stop thinking about it. Stop letting the block become the obstacle that derails you.
I experienced that recently in my day job. Taking a job that involves me calling people on the phone and selling sponsorships. Who was I thinking I was when I said yes to that? I couldn't change what I did, I wasn't able to control the nature of my job and I forced myself to stop thinking about the fear. I realized that working outside of my comfort zone would benefit me regardless of what I was doing in my life. So after twirling in my chair, I made my phone calls. It wasn't perfect, I wasn't perfect but I did it.
By not dwelling on the past and swimming in the despair opened me up to new opportunities. Whether it be a job or an unexpected story line, controlling the fear gives you a new approach to the problem. So if you write something awful, that shouldn't be seen by anyone else, that's okay. That's what the edit is for. At least the story is moving forward and you gain word count. Say to hell with the writer's block. You're better than that.