On coping with writer’s block (or the lies we tell ourselves along the way)

writing 2

 

I haven’t written in a very long time.

I joined a creative writing class a while ago to help me through my ‘writer’s block’ – can you call yourself a writer if you don’t write? – and I managed to produce a total of 500 words over the entire four-week course. A paltry amount by any standards, though the course itself was brilliant.

One of the suggestions from my fellow writers was to write about why I don’t write. I’ve been thinking a lot about the reasons I don’t write lately so this seemed as good a place to kick off my writing again as any. And also address why I call myself a writer in the first place – a hard sell in the writing void of the last few months.

In my professional life, I have been a public relations consultant, a journalist and now, an editor. Words play a big part in all of these professions, but using words professionally can also sound their death knell (which is why journalists and copywriters in England are often referred to as hacks, and why I struggled during the creative writing course to allow myself to indulge in the sheer poetry and playfulness of language).

Ultimately, I call myself a writer because it’s all I’ve ever wanted to be. My love of writing and books has imprinted itself on every aspect of my life, from a natural affinity and love for bookshops and libraries to the deep and immediate connection I feel with other writers, my tendency to navigate the world verbally rather than visually, and the nagging sense that I am failing in something vital when I don’t write. If you believe, as I do, that everyone has something to offer the world, then this is mine.

But my body of work as a writer at this point in time is pitiful – there’s no other word for it. I’ve journaled, of course – though not regularly enough – and my computer is littered with pieces I’ve started and never finished: scraps of reviews, features, blogs that never developed into anything, ideas for stories/blogs that never materialized.

I’ve joined and started my own writing groups, online and real world, and I’ve probably read every article on how to get writing or why we procrastinate you can imagine. I even dumped my trusty Samsung PC and invested in a gorgeous MacBook Air a couple of years ago so I could lug my computer to cafes more easily and write more. And I still haven’t mastered the art of writing consistently. Or writing at all.

 

This is what I’ve learned along the way:

 

1. Writing is hard

Ok – it’s not hard in the way that feeding your kids is when you’re broke, or doing backbreaking manual labour for a pittance, or dealing with a terminal disease, or bereavement, or any of the other terrible tragedies that befall us in life. But it’s hard because, if it’s going to be any good, at some point or another, you’ll be digging deep inside your own personal well for inspiration.

You’ll be foraging for scraps and ideas, and sometimes you’ll be venturing into the darkness – into shadowy places in the recesses of your mind or heart that you’ve kept locked away for a reason. It takes courage to do that – which is why, I think, so much great art springs from misery. When you’re already at the bottom, there’s nowhere else to go but up.

 

2. Writing is extra hard when you’re a perfectionist

Perfectionism is crippling and something that I believe is particularly crippling for the female of the species. I don’t want to stray into the reasons for that but I do remember being struck at my first newspaper by how much quicker my male colleagues produced copy. For me, it often feels more like giving birth – forgive the analogy – and the labour pains can be excruciating (I apologise in advance to the mums out there). Every word has to be just right and the structure and cadence have to be perfect too, which can make writing both tedious and exhausting – and very, very slow.

 

3. You’re baring your soul

Especially if you’re writing a personal blog but this applies all round, I think. I still remember the anxiety I felt when my first byline appeared as a journalist. Suddenly hundreds – perhaps even thousands – of people were going to be reading something that I wrote (and if I was lucky and reasonably good at what I did, hadn’t been butchered by a sub having a bad day).

The best analogy I can use is that I felt strangely naked. This was actually for a local newspaper and the best riposte – then and now – to anyone getting precious about their copy is the old British adage that “today’s news is tomorrow’s fish ‘n chips paper.” Though in our digital age, what you write is out there pretty much forever. That’s a helluva load to bear at times.

 

4. Writing is lonely

This might be the toughest one of all and the reason why so many of us freelance writers, in particular, put it off for as long as possible. The truth is, for many writers, the only thing that gets us moving is a deadline – usually one wielded by a terrifying editor, and/or one that your next check depends on.

Writing for any other reason is a tortuous (see point 1) and deeply lonely process that requires a commitment to sitting at your chosen writing spot by yourself for as long as it takes to produce something. And a blank page staring back at you is, quite frankly, a terrifying thing. This is when watching terrible reality TV/cleaning the house/doing the washing up/catching up on your emails or Facebook/ tidying your wardrobe or performing just about any other mundane chore you’ve been putting off for ages suddenly becomes very appealing.

Combine this with the points that I’ve listed above and it’s a miracle that anything’s produced at all.

 

5. Writers have the most creative excuses (or, no one rationalises like a writer)

During my times of block – which have been too many to recount – I’ve come up with increasingly desperate strategies to a) either increase my output or b) explain why I’m blocked in the first place. These have ranged from getting rid of my Samsung in favour of a lighter computer (all writers fantasize about increased portability and how it will stimulate their writing) to wanting to move to a desert island or, failing that, to move my desk/adjust my writing area (since the feng shui is clearly wrong or the sun’s shining in the wrong spot), to the necessity for writing companions (hence the numerous writing groups), to subscribing to various writing sites, to reading countless articles on the sources of other writers’ inspiration, in the hope that somehow the magic will rub off.

None of this works. It’s all obfuscation – or, to paraphrase both Nike and Bukowski – real writers just do it.

 

6. Writers’ egos are fragile      

Writers, by nature, are sensitive folk and particularly vulnerable to criticism and critique, especially if we’re putting ourselves out there on a regular basis. Of course, few people will actually critique you to your face – unless you’ve hit the big time and written a bestseller or gone viral – though again, the Internet’s changed up the game and brought your readership virtually to your desk now.

But I’d hazard a guess that many of us writers fear the judgment of our peers in particular. We are also our own worst critics, especially if you’re also an editor like me. I cast a critical eye on most things I read, including my own work – when I can bear to re-read it at all. The problem is that it’s all entirely subjective anyway which means there’s never going to be a proper consensus on whether something’s good or not. You’ve just got to grin and bear it.

 

7. Creativity and discipline are mutually exclusive

Now this isn’t strictly true or no great art would ever have been produced but I think you know what I mean. For all of the reasons listed above, and possibly a few others, our tendency is to look at the production of anything ‘artistic’ as a spontaneous process – a cathartic outpouring, if you like. As a culture, we’ve always romanticised the mad genius/tortured artist archetype, something that other artistic souls are particularly susceptible to (I can definitely attest to this). It takes growing up to realize that writing is a craft that requires dedication and practice, and a little discipline in the process will take you an awful long way.

 

Ultimately, the writer’s paradox is this – you battle your fragile ego and swallow the loneliness and misery and angst of the process because you want to reach out and connect, as EM Forster famously said. Because this is your way of making sense of the world and you’d like to – need to! – share it, in the hope that someone else out there feels the same way too. And because, in some small way, you’re repaying the countless writers, journalists and bloggers who enlivened your world for a moment, or made you think, or moved you to tears or joy or laughter, simply by choosing the right words.

Do I have any advice for any of you struggling with the block right now? This – the only thing I’ve consistently heard and the only thing that really makes sense: Stop making excuses and just do it. If you can inject some discipline into your writing practice, even better. Most of all, just write.

We’re writers – that’s what we do.

 

 

 

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267 thoughts on “On coping with writer’s block (or the lies we tell ourselves along the way)

  1. “Can you call yourself a writer if you don’t write?”

    This question has haunted me for a very long time. Although recently I’ve been making a real effort to sit down and write, I still feel very vulnerable when asked what it is I do with my time. Recently I met someone who wouldn’t take “I write” for an answer. She wnt all the way to ask what kind of writing I do and whether I have anything published. I was in sweat by the time this little small talk was over.

    Thank you for is post. It’s good to be reminded every now and then that I’m not alone.

    • Thank you Arwa – and you’ve been doing great – so impressed with how much you’ve been doing lately. you are a writer – never doubt that. much love – take care. xx

  2. Glad to see you back on the wagon! I think you pretty much nailed all of our . . . excuses?! I’d add / underline one thing, though: I think a big reason many writers are currently struggling with their writing (and you wouldn’t believe how many people I know who feel like this) is that we are too preoccupied with the publishing and broadcasting of our output, and all that entails in terms of expectations: as I wrote in that Medium piece (coincidentally—or not!—pretty much the last thing of substance I wrote), writing has become a public rather than a private practice, for many of us.

    I think there are a few ways to solve this:
    1. Just don’t give a shit about what you publish. This is pretty much impossible for a perfectionist.
    2. Don’t publish anything (or at least nothing that isn’t polished) and just write regularly for yourself—on paper, locked in your hard drive, whatever. Doesn’t have to be “journalling.”
    3. Middle ground — have one site where you fling your daily musings, not caring about “quality”, and one where you publish the more polished pieces that you would want to be known for.

    The latter is kind of the approach that Cheri has taken. This, combined with a new theme for her blog, has really opened her up. I’ll let her explain it in her words: http://writingthroughthefog.com/2014/05/20/blogging-rediscovered/

    Keep at it! xx

    • Thank you so much for this Nick – I always value your input. I remember having a similar conversation with you when we were talking about free writing and I was saying how unsatisfying I found it. But I don’t know that I’m over concerned with the output of my stuff – I probably should be more concerned, I think. I think it’s equally possible to flip the argument around – it’s never been easier to self-publish (i.e., blog) at the very least which I think is a wonderful thing – i like the inherent democracy of blogging..

      Just read Cheri’s post and what she says about the impact of the blog format one chooses really resonated. I’ve also always been affected by things like my choice of title and the format (I’ve changed my blog theme loads of times and finally found this one today that I like – but who knows for how long?!) but have to say I filed that under my creative excuses/too sensitive category – perhaps it’s more valid than I gave it credit for.

      At the end of the day, I think I’d do a combo of 2 and 3. I don’t know that I could publish anything that wasn’t of sufficient ‘quality’ but I do think it’s important to keep writing regularly for yourself. Or perhaps I’m being pedantic about the word ‘quality’ – I doubt that any of Cheri’s stuff on the other blog is poor – just shorter, or more casual than the sort of long, thoughtful, more polished pieces we generally aim for. That isn’t a bad idea – I may well set up another blog for that simply because it’s important to also do – and publish – the sort of writing that flows a little easier – for psychological reasons, if nothing else (have been thinking about a food blog for a while now – hmm… )

      In any case, plenty of food for thought – very grateful for your input and Cheri’s thoughts too. Please write something soon – you’re too good a writer to not be writing. much love to you both – take care.

    • i agree about not worrying about being published to an extent. That said, being published validates you as a writer. The effort to get published is similar to being a writer. It’s work. It’s keeping at it and being determined. There is nothing to a writer like that email that announces your submission has been accepted for publication and then seeing your name and work in print .

      And still, we have all of these obstacles mentioned in this blog to overcome before we get there :)!

      • Perhaps it depends on how we define publshing – I think being read validates you as a writer and we all hope that our blogs get read so I see bloging as publishing to a certain extent.. Good luck re overcoming the obstacles either way!

  3. This is very interesting, particularly the ‘just write’ advice. I beat myself up for a while over the ‘real writers write regularly’ thing, as I hardly ever write anything serious and when I do I’m incredibly critical of it. Then I realised that actually, I *was* writing regularly, but I wasn’t valuing what I *did* write as it was ‘just blogposts’, ‘just humour’. But I put as much effort into these posts as I do into anything ‘serious’ I write – I still spend ages rewriting, reshuffling, rethinking, editing, and I never post until I’m completely happy. I’m a lot calmer now I’ve decided that this is what I do, what I’m good at – at least at the moment – and that it’s just as valid and worthy of my time and effort as writing serious reviews, comment pieces, fiction or whatever. Just a thought. Thanks for the piece and good luck 🙂

    • Many thanks for this – and yes – it’s very easy to put down all the other writing we do – i think that’s a personal thing as to what we value as ‘real’ writing, you know? but it seems to me that if you take the trouble to craft it, edit, reshuffle etc – that’s real writing. and had a quick shifty at your blog and i’d say you definitely shouldn’t be beating yourself up about it – there’s real writing there and plenty of it. Block – what block?! Good luck!

  4. Thank you for sharing this. I can relate to all of the feelings that you’ve described! While I have no qualms sharing evidence-based papers, it’s the writing which comes from my Self – like blogging – that I struggle with the most and yet feel so drawn to doing. I feel very encouraged knowing that the pros share the same feelings of vulnerability.

    • You’re very welcome Mae-Lin – I’m glad it resonated – so many of us seem to feel the same way, no matter how long we’ve been writing. Good luck with it – the hardest pieces can be the most satisfying in the end..

  5. Thank you for this post! I definitely find myself making these creative excuses and falling into some of these other traps, so it definitely hits close to home here. I will have to share this with my readers!

    Changing your scenery a bit can help get you out of that rut, whether that means going somewhere completely new or simply taking a slightly different route to work that day. I think it causes you to look at things differently and requires your brain to make connections it hasn’t made before.

    Wonderful post! 🙂

    • Thank you Valerie – I think you’re right, as long as I make sure I actually write something – else, the change of scene ends up falling into my creative excuses category 🙂 good luck and all best.

  6. Hey beautiful stuff…block no block…somewhere you know it deep down that yes you can write…I always feel like any other art form you need to have the talent which is of course gifted, then comes honing the skill. Anyhow writers block is that period which we all face once in a while, reasons being many, one which I feel is being hard on oneself….if we let loose those are moments which helps us to give our best. Truly creativity can’t be flourished in a cage….it needs the soul to have that burden less moment when it can welcome the spring….I loved your article….each point clear, simple….matter of fact. Girl you deserve freshly pressed…I will follow you…keep it up.

    • Chaitali – thank you so much for your lovely message – much appreciated. love your blog too and its spirit and warmth and vitality. let’s stay in touch – and keep up the good work!

  7. Hey beautiful stuff…block no block…somewhere you know it deep down that yes you can write…I always feel like any other art form you need to have the talent which is of course gifted, then comes honing the skill. Anyhow writers block is that period which we all face once in a while, reasons being many, one which I feel is being hard on oneself….if we let loose those are moments which helps us to give our best. Truly creativity can’t be flourished in a cage….it needs the soul to have that burden less moment when it can welcome the spring….I loved your article….each point clear, simple….matter of fact. Girl you deserve freshly pressed…I will follow you…keep it up.

  8. Absolutely love this post. I have never seen myself as a “writer,” however I do enjoy communicating. And that is simply what writing is – communication. Creating dialogue with the reader and encouraging thoughts about the author’s topic is a POWERFUL skill, but it can’t happen unless you write.

    Just write.

  9. By telling the story of your writer’s block, you have proved your writing side. Writer’s block is every writer’s trademark. You own it and that itself shows you are a good writer.

  10. I blew through this post very quickly – because it was easy to read and because I could relate on every level – and am now dying to read more from you!

    Recently, I received an out-of-the-blue comment from an accomplished writer who divulged his secret to writer’s block: just start typing. Actually, he sent me on a scavenger hunt through the move Finding Forrester so that I could figure it out myself. Smiling!

    Other than to just start writing, I have another tactic that I use to battle my war with perfectionism (naturally, I am of the female species). I call my imperfections out to my audience ahead of time, but I don’t cite auto-correct. Instead, I wield the pressing need to spread Christianity – this is the genre of my blog – as more important than incessantly revising a post because it isn’t “just so.”

    For me, I can easily say that it isn’t about being perfect. It’s about getting the Word out. I actually wrote a post about this very topic because, as I mentioned, I call out my errors ahead of time. Of course, without some sort of valid – debatable, I admit – predetermined excuse, a writer would indeed just have to do it.

    • Thank you – I think we all need to find our own strategies and coping mechanisms – whatever works! good luck with your writing..

  11. This strikes a chord. I finished writing my novel about a year ago, but I haven’t been back since. Editing it doesn’t look all too appealing and I’ve put it off for a while. I’m going to start again on June – or at least, that’s what I say. :/

    I have heard that willpower doesn’t actually have anything to do with whether you finish a task or not – it’s actually starting it that compels you to finish it off.

    • I wish you luck and strength with that – having written it is an amazing achievement in itself. hope you manage to start soon – good luck!

  12. Wow, this is really great. I am not exactly a writer, more of a journalist of thoughts and books, but I have attempted some books once or twice, and the result was disastrous. I have tons of book ideas, but I can never really get them out of my head. I’m a perfectionist as well, so writing for me is super duper hard.

  13. It’s funny… one of my first poems was about writer’s block. At the age of about 11 or 12. It’s been ten years and it never lets up! But I think the way I know I’m a writer is that I suffer from this. If writer’s block didn’t frustrate me so much it would be because I weren’t even thinking about it. A dance who can’t dance thinks about dancing and a writer who can’t write thinks about writing… they’re still a writer.

  14. I love this post. It’s like you have read my thoughts.

    We writers feel so lonely so often because we sit by ourselves for so long staring at that blank page, constantly against ourselves that most of the time we don’t even realize that there are other writers out there that are going through the EXACT same thing.

    Also, I think it’s awesome that you call yourself a real writer because that’s all you have ever wanted to be. Great reason!

  15. My excuse for not writing is most often a form of #4. I enjoy the “loneliness” of writing so much so that when I cannot find time to be alone, I would rather not write at all than write with distractions. Yet for all of my excuses and having never been published I still find it easier to call myself a writer than calling myself a photographer. Something I’ve made money doing.

    • i wish i enjoyed the loneliness more – that’s a perpetual struggle. hope you manage to find the time and space to write..

  16. I really related to numbers 1, 2 & 3 (as I’m sure most writers did). I always feel as if my blog will come off whiney or depressing because I often find the most inspiration in those “dark places.” It’s not necessarily a bad thing but I’m a generally happy person and I worry people will get the wrong idea about me. I also loved #7 because I am constantly struggling over the fact that my bursts of writing inspiration come at the worst times. I’m at work or in class… Somewhere where I can’t write. When I go to write later it feels like the passion is gone. I hate that!

    • on the contrary, i think those dark places can produce some of the most powerful writing – though, granted, it can be tough to get the tone right. what about keeping a tiny little notebook by you for the moments when inspiration strikes – just so you can jog your memory later? i always mean to do this and never quite manage unfortunately..

  17. I love the idea of writing in gratitude for the writers who’ve inspired you. I always try to keep a higher purpose in mind for my writing. More than merely reflecting what I see and hear and think and feel and imagine but also transforming it into something helpful to others, and pleasing to God. Kurt Vonnegut said his favorite thing about writing were the little nuggets of truth that dropped down on him from above. Writers should focus on advancing the kingdom. Do that, and the words will fall into place.

  18. Pingback: A Link To Writing | Thoughts of a Nimble Reader

  19. I can relate to some of what you said. I fall into the category of the lone writer, having tried writing groups I can never write with people around me. I do my best work from my writing cave. Perhaps you can shed some light on my current dilemma – I am in the midst of writing a memoir. I started blogging last summer as an exercise to keep my writers brain alive and well, and me accountable. What I’ve found is that as my blog has picked up readers so much of my time is spent on creating articles, reading fellow bloggers, commenting, etc. I fear my book is suffering. And I don’t know if I can have my head in both….thoughts. I greatly enjoyed your post btw and good luck with your writing! 🙂 ~Karen~

    • Many thanks Karen. I haven’t experienced that myself yet though I’ve heard it can become a problem – so much so that some very successful bloggers just end up quitting. I guess it’s a question of priorities – if you’re enjoying the blogging, keep at it, but if it’s becoming more of a chore and you’d rather focus on the memoir, then you could always take a break from the blog for a bit? I wish you luck either way – all best.

  20. I enjoyed your piece and found it to be true on many levels.
    If you get the chance, check out my humorous take on writer block, go to captsabino.wordpress.com and the post entitled “The Absolute-Complete-Guide To Becoming The Next Great American Author (spoken boldly in a powerful informercial voice!!!)”

    • Thanks Victor – I enjoyed it – lots of good stuff in there (though I get points deducted for studying both literature and journalism! 🙂

  21. For the love of writing! 🙂 I know exactly what you mean about the difficulties behind writing but those are also the beauty behind it. Writing allows us all to live in this physical world while traveling into the deep abyss within our minds during those nights in the comfortable chair writing our hearts out. No matter how lonely, long, and difficult it gets, it is truly cathartic as you mentioned. The healing of the soul. Oh what a wonderful feeling.

    • you’re right – the feeling of satisfaction and fulfilment you get when you’ve actually written something you’re happy with is incomparable 🙂

  22. This just about sums it up. I too, define myself as a writer and then chastise myself for doing that because I don’t write. For me, a lot of it is #2. And the only way to combat that is to realize that it’s better to create something imperfect than to not create at all!

    • yes – you have to find what works for you. some people swear by free writing, for example. i wish you luck in overcoming the perfectionism demon..

  23. This is very helpful! As a young college student I am embarking on this journey of being a writer and I’ve only just grazed the hardships. I feel almost lost and question myself all the time if I am meant to be a writer. This encouragement and advice really helps me realize that there will always be critiques and judgement, I will always nit-pick with my insecurities. To defeat my demons is to write.

    • absolutely – some of it goes with the territory though lots of writers also find strategies that work for them. you’re not alone either way – i wish you luck and lots of good writing ahead!

  24. Reblogged this on Mitani's Writings and commented:
    While I’m not a professional, or trained writer… or… well… I struggle with keeping to a schedule because I’m already so ridiculously behind. From posting the first chapter of the Blue Arrow there was a huge gap between anything else. I’d promised myself one update a week, this is a little something extra with someone else’s views on writing.

  25. I agree with your conclusion (I mean I agree with your entire post, but I am addressing your conclusion). I find myself not writing – and I can say why, I can say a hundred reasons why, but no matter how adroitly I address those issues, I just invent more. Most anti-writing block advice I hear can be boiled down to “just do it” – if that is not the actual advice itself. And it is true for me. The issues that keep me from writing are illusions; they disappear when I say “Look, we’re going to type words and we’re not going to care if they suck, and we’re doing it whether you like it or not.” And only then do they disappear.

  26. Yup. Just do it… seems so simple, really. My problem when I first started out was subject matter. Now, having recently started a second blog (what is wrong with THIS picture?), my problem is cross-pollenizing- keeping the themes of each blog distinct and interesting (well, interesting to me, at any rate!

    • I don’t think i could start a second blog unless it was very different – a food blog, for example – would be too much work. good luck with your blogs!

  27. This speaks to my soul. Plus, it takes so much energy. After I write (whether it’s academically, creatively, or for a blog), I feel exhausted.
    I really enjoyed reading this 🙂

    • thank you – glad it resonated. but exhausted in a good way, no? like you’ve done something useful – that’s what i enjoy about it. i feel productive. (however, I am also a lapsed catholic who is very familiar with catholic guilt 🙂

  28. I have always been a writer who didn’t write and I just recently began writing again. I found that writing about writing really helps. Now when I feel that I have no idea where I even want to start with a blog, I just write about what I want the blog to be about. So technically I am not writing the actual blog. I am just writing about wanting to write the blog. It usually unfolds itself from there. This works for me at least. Maybe it will work for you:)

    • Thanks Erin – will try it if i get very stuck again, though my perfectionist tendencies might get in the way.. : )

  29. I just found your blog and I love this post! Everything that you wrote is exactly what I feel, you were just brave enough to put it out there! Thank you! I can’t wait to read more from you.

  30. Writing is therapy for me, which may be annoying to my readers, but c’est la vie. I bare my soul, as you say, and that’s what makes it worthwhile. I recently wrote an extremely personal bit of memoir and cringed at the thought of sharing it on my blog. Then it got picked up and published in a journal! So dig deep and share the tough stuff – it’s what makes it real. That’s what connects us. Keep writing – Congrats on the FP! That should be an encouragement.

    • Thank you so much – and yes, completely agree – baring your soul can be incredibly liberating and powerful, especially if you really want to connect. Congratulations, and good luck!

    • Persevere Nicky – especially if it makes you feel better once you’ve written – that’s what we do : ) Good luck!

  31. As a prolific author of over 40 books, I can most certainly agree with you that writing is hard. However, I think that when we tend to focus on the enormity of a task such as publishing a book (or even a lengthy blog post), the natural tendency here is to get overwhelmed. When we get overwhelmed, we tend to get frustrated, thus leading us to throw in the proverbial towel and give up.

    This is further exacerbated for authors who haven’t yet traversed the perilous publishing roads before. What happens is that we tend to chunk together all of the processes that need to occur for this to happen and we redline, so to speak. We think about the countless hours required for writing, editing, reworking, then marketing, and so on. We think about how many things we have to give up just in order to push out good work, and it consumes us.

    However, when you just focus on developing the day-to-day writing habit, such as the desire to output 2,000 words each day even when you don’t feel like it, you would be surprised with what you can actually accomplish. Because, with writing, you can’t simply wait for inspiration to strike all the time, you have to work your craft and hone your skills. But, as you said, most writers tend to be perfectionists, and yes, we tend to have fragile egos, so it this can oftentimes be difficult to accomplish.

    But, when you take a different perspective and approach, and you look at writing as an effort to provide value to others out there in the world – whether entertainment value or informational value – and you focus more on developing better daily habits to write, it gets easier.

    I don’t profess to be some guru, but just more focused on the development of those all-important habits that lead to success in this (and other) areas of life.

    • thank you for this. I do agree with you – the problem is that we’re not naturally disciplined types so it’s a struggle but it’s entirely possible, as lots of writers like you prove daily. many congratulations!

  32. Reblogged this on Lifestyles, Music, and Community Involvement. and commented:
    Coping With Writer’s Block. This piece really gives good insight into writing of all sorts, and how to overcome writers block when necessary, people are not perfect so it is a faze every writer experiences and overcoming obstacles is all part of the job, in order to produce the best work in the most efficient way possible.

  33. I must admit that I regret that this is my first impression of your blog. This post is such a mirror to issues I have been struggling with for a number of years now, but especially over the last few weeks. I’ve been calling myself a writer since I was in college working towards a journalism diploma, but didn’t do a whole lot with it after graduation. (Truthfully I failed to keep enough of my work and don’t really have an up-to-par portfolio to find work in smalltown Newfoundland, Canada.

    Reading this post, I truly wish I stumbled across your cyber home a lot earlier, but thank god for Freshly Pressed (and Congrats too)
    I was actually working on a post concerning writer’s block but you nailed it so exact to what I was thinking, I’m probably just going to have to reblog yours a give you the props you deserve.

    Great read. Keep It Up 🙂

    • Thank you so much – and good luck with your writing – it’s never too late to pick it up again as i can testify 🙂

  34. Very relatable. I had writer’s block for three years. It was partly because I was in school and I had some much to read and write about. The other reason was because I became scared of my own creative voice. Writing is deep, dark and personal. I was scared that if I bared too much of my soul, no one would understand me. I’m over it now. But I know where you’re coming from.

  35. This is such a great article! I see myself in this piece and it is so good to see I’m not alone in my whole writing (or lack thereof) endeavor. Thanks so much. I needed to hear it.

  36. Hi everyone, my name is Marilynn. I am an outgoing person and I live in a 2 bedroom apartment in London, Ontario. I raised five children – 4 daughters and 1 son – at the time of my relocation, I had a 2 level, 5 bedroom home so hats off to downsizing!!

    I am new to blogging but want to learn more. I stumbled across this conversation and am also interested in writing stories.

    I don’t have a chance to mingle on a daily basis since I have been unemployed. I was involved in education and really have missed the people I worked with and the projects we worked on.

    Now I meet and talk to people on the streets, in the stores, on the buses and in parks especially now that we have our summer people have come out of the cozy confines of their homes.

    Have a great day 🙂
    Marilynn

    • Hi Marilyn – you could start by writing about the conversations you’re having with people – perhaps tell their stories – and see how you go? good luck with it – and welcome to the blogosphere!

  37. I can resonate with the 3rd point… Afters years of desire to start writing just few weeks back i managed to start my blog and yes i did fee like i was bearing my soul out to the world which was scary but now i do find it interesting and addictive.

  38. Thank you for this post and for talking about every writer or every one who dreams to write Illusion

    If you are based in Egypt can you tell me what creative course did you take , please

    Warmest Regards

    • You’re welcome – my course was with a woman called Linda Sharbat Cleary who often does courses with Diwan bookstores – you should be able to find her on Facebook. Good luck!

  39. Amazing post. You did such an excellent job of articulating many of the daily and weekly struggles of being a writer. The worst part about them is sometimes (every time) the emotions and struggles you experience as a writer are hard to put into words. By accomplishing this you legitimize our existence.

    Reblogged on http://www.wanna-bewriter.com!

    Cheers,

    Connor

  40. Reblogged this on Wanna-Be Writer and commented:
    I stumbled across this post scrolling through the Freshly Pressed posts this morning and was immediately struck by how powerful this post was. As a writer, there are certain things that I struggle with on a daily basis – most importantly the question of “Can I call myself a writer if I don’t write/am not published?” SunnyRap at Black Coffee and Cigarettes was able to put many of these unexplainable emotions and struggles into words. By doing so she legitimizes writers and our insecurities (which we often think are just in our head). If you’re curious about what I, as a writer, think about on a daily basis check this out.

  41. I am a writer. I suggest getting into your senses every day in good ways to connect your inspiration then just write whatever u want. Your muse may return. I’m writing a book called be yourownsensuouslfecoach

  42. Great post. You’ve put into wonderful words everything I’ve been feeling lately about the joys and pains of writing. Thank you 🙂

  43. On feeling vulnerable to critique: Yeah, some of my writing might well be dreadful, and someone might be gasping in horror as they read it. I’ve read some awful books in my life. But the truth is, I can barely remember the specifics now. Most people have so many other things going on that they’ll soon forget ‘that lousy book I read.’ This comforts me in a strange kind of way.

  44. Nice article. When I did a creative writing course the lecturer told us that to overcome writers block just grab any book or magazine and copy in longhand whatever you are reading from them. Eventually your own words will come through. Tried it a couple of times and it doeswork.

  45. Thanks for your comments. I’m at the point where I’ve done everything I can think of to not start my next book. I set June 1st as a goal, then I scheduled two doctor appointments to stall that. No, I’m not sick, they’re for one of the dogs and the cat. Pathetic.

  46. Oh yes. I can relate to this. How can you call yourself a writer when you don’t write?
    I think as a writer though, even when you’re not working at that particular WIP, you’re always in ‘writer’ mode.
    Reading is part of writing.
    Research is part of writing.
    Making up back stories about people you meet is part of writing.
    Learning from others about writing is part of writing.
    Even when you’re not typing at a keyboard or scribbling with a pen…you’re still a writer. If it is what you love to do.

  47. I have just finished drafting a post on being a perfectionist with writer’s block and thought I’d have a browse through Freshly Pressed, and how pleased was I to find your post! I too wrote about allowing myself to be distracted by anything and how domesticated I become when I have something to write. I too wrote about making excuses and spending time and money trying to set up a better writing environment, but still feeling the inescapable sharp edge of the blank page and blinking cursor. And I too wrote about writing about writer’s block in order to try to break it.

    I extend my sincerest sympathies your way, and to anyone else feeling this.

    I haven’t posted it yet by the way. The perfectionism is turning into a crippling critic. I’ve lost the joy of writing for its own sake at the moment. Correspondence – and I include this comment in that – is good for de-bunging – I can write emails, letters, comments, journal entries easily, but anything “serious” and I hit a wall.

    Love your post – thanks.

  48. I have felt all of these things! The lack of discipline, afraid to reveal to much and grasping for inspiration. Glad to know I’m not alone out here staring at a blank screen. Thanks!

  49. Spot on. For years I’ve wanted to hone my craft, make a name, and get that great story idea to the printing presses, but instead of mastering the craft, I’ve become a master of dodging the craft. We’ve all heard or used all of the excuses in the book, but in the end Nike has it: Just do it! That’s what brought me to Word Press. I’m hoping an active blog will keep me motivated to write something every day and in the process get better at what I do while building the confidence to seek printed publication. Best to you, and write on!

  50. Great post! I have a friend who is an editor and he has said he has a hard time turning off the editor portion of his brain in order to write creatively. Good luck!!

  51. And it’s even harder when you’re living with the enemy. Basically, your own mind. And you can become your own worst enemy and the internet doesn’t always help because everyone becomes a self-appointed “critic” and I use that word loosely for people who think they know it all or the ones who write up lists for everything that’s trite, cliche and so on. It just becomes a quagmire for the mind. And given all this, it’s easy to see why so many writers become alcoholics, because one needs something to drown out the voices in one’s own head. And even moreso when you do internet research and you find yourself again with these internet critics. It’s similar to going to the checkout of a grocery store and while waiting in line your eyes go to these beauty magazines and then you start to feel very very ugly as a result. And like you said, writer’s egos are fragile. A writer’s ego is like a sandcastle: it takes a long time to built but is very easy to destroy.

  52. I struggle with all of these things. I blog just about everyday but my real issue is time. I’m exhausted by the time I get off of work and grade at home for my second job and care for my son. Well, those are the lies I tell myself, because really what holds me back is the fear that it is not good enough. Scarlett O’Hara is my hero in that “I’ll think about that tomorrow..” However, my plan for the summer when my son is spending more time at his dads is to set aside time every week to write. Schedule it, make a plan, write it down and tell someone who will hold me accountable. I’m trying to tell myself that it doesn’t matter that all I write in that hour is crap, so long as I write something. The more I write, eventually I’ll end up with something usable. Another challenge I face is that I’ve never written fiction, only non-fiction. It is an entirely different beast. I am up for the challenge, but it is difficult for me to write scenes not knowing exactly where the story is going. Wish me luck!

  53. Thank you – your post and all the comments that followed are inspiring. I definitely relate to your reasons…and with that it’s time to get off my butt, stop avoiding as I have been this morning and get to work!!

  54. All of your points are echoing inside my skull – so very much truth in this post and I would not really consider myself a ‘writer’. Great blog, keep up the writing. It must be difficult to manage professional writing (as an editor) and personal writing (wordpress). Cheers.

  55. This is so spot on. I am glad to have read this. Thank you for sharing. I too feel I suffer from this. Its almost like when I sit down to write all my ideas escape my head and I stare at the “canvas” so to speak and watch it magically grow. Which never happens. But slowly the “canvas” is full and you are proud of the outcome.

  56. I really enjoy you’re blog. I am 15 and I aspire to become a screenwriter/ director. I post regularly but I have only just started so I have not got very many followers. Could you please read my blog and give feedback in comments section? Writing is my passion. And being heard is too. Can you share me if you like the blog and only if you like the blog. Thank you.

  57. Thanks for your thoughtful article. Yes we all suffer from self doubt at times it is the nature of a writer’s life. The key is to keep going, enjoy the good days when writing comes easily, and forget the bad days. Join a local writer’s group if there is one in your area. I found this really helpful. A change of scene is also great. i went to Brighton to get away from it all to write,(I must blog about this sometime it was so inspiring, a great confidence booster, and such fun!)

  58. This is a wonderful and honest post. I appreciate you sharing what you have learned along the way. We writers need to support one another. I invite you to visit my blog where I share my journey. Thank you and continued success on your writing.

  59. Reblogged this on Bev Elle and commented:
    I found this profoundly illuminating. Now to see if it helps me when I’m grappling with writer’s block 🙂

  60. This may sound strange, but I think that so-called “writers’ block” is my friend. It tells me when I have taken a wrong turn. Something about plot or character just isn’t working, and my subconscious knows it even if my conscious mind does not. I figure that it behooves me to pay attention, so I have a good look at my plot, scene, character or whatever in order to try to discover the problem. One of my favourite methods of dealing with it is journalling a conversation between me and the character whom I suspect I am having problems with. I script it like a play. I know it sounds a little schizy, but it works. I usually find that I have been asking the character to do something he or she does not want to do. No, I don’t think they’re real people – I’m not THAT schizy, but characters take on a certain consistency of traits that reveal themselves in action which needs to be respected, and a little free association, journalling a conversation with the character AS IF he/she were real can be very helpful at ferreting out problems. So I usually feel pretty pleased when I get blocked because I know what I have to do and that what I do will give me a better story – preferable to forging ahead and writing thousands of words that I will just have to throw out in the end.

    About the things you have learned (and I am commenting on them not to be argumentative but to try to be helpful):

    1. Writing is hard

    I don’t think it is, not if you respect the process.

    2. Writing is extra hard when you’re a perfectionist

    I think that is where you might not be respecting the process. There is writing and there is editing, and I don’t see how you can do both at the same time – it sounds to me as if you are trying. I don’t believe it works because storytelling and the mechanics come from different places in the brain, so when you do the one you are shutting the other down, creating a tug-of-war in your brain that gets you tied up in knots and, yes, at its worst, blocked. Imagine this: a writing team where one member is trying to write an engaging story with interesting characters while the other is looking over his shoulder saying, “That word is peeled wrong; that paragraph is too long; that sentence is awkward . . . ” How much work do you think they will get done? And how good is there story going to be? Will either of them enjoy the process? How long will the team stay together? “Not bloody long,” is my guess at an answer to the last question. Now, instead of two writers, imagine two parts of your brain getting locked into this kind of struggle. It’s not a pretty sight. No wonder you’re blocked. Respect the process. Remember what Hemingway said? “All first drafts are shit.” Let shit be shit as long as there’s a good story growing out of the manure. You can (and should) clean it up later.

    3. You’re baring your soul

    That’s part of the game. Enjoy it. Being a writer gives you license to do what others cannot. The guy at the party who spills his guts ends up in a corner. The writer who does it – not to be maudlin or to cry, “Poor me!” but to illuminate, gains respect, and his writing is better for it.

    4. Writing is lonely

    Again, it’s part of the game. I would go nuts if I didn’t get enough alone time.

    5. Writers have the most creative excuses (or, no one rationalises like a writer)

    Then stop doing it. Plant your ass in the chair and be thankful when you are “blocked”. Remember: it’s your friend – honest.

    6. Writers’ egos are fragile

    Oh, God! It’s not about ego; it’s about craft. Do you crumble when you get a scathing critique? DONT! Be thankful! Thank the person you “scathed” you. Like being “blocked”, he’s your friend (unless he’s one of those assholes who haunt writers’ websites getting a kick out of kicking newbies). Remember, it is your craft that is being critiqued, not YOU. No-one is saying you’re a shitty person, just trying to help you with your craft.

    7. Creativity and discipline are mutually exclusive

    No, they’re not; they’re just different parts of the process (see above). And remember, no-one’s forcing you to do it. If you don’t like it, do something else. Discipline enables us to capture the inspiration. They are like folds in the same garment (I stole that from somewhere).

    “Ultimately, the writer’s paradox is this – you battle your fragile ego and swallow the loneliness and misery and angst of the process because you want to reach out and connect, as EM Forster famously said.”

    I don’t buy it. Seeing your ego as fragile and all the rest takes you down a path that angels fear to tread – sorry about the cliche – but Vincent van Gogh was all too familiar with. Sorry, but I like my ears the way they are.

    “Because this is your way of making sense of the world and you’d like to – need to! – share it, in the hope that someone else out there feels the same way too.”

    If you really need to do it, the discipline part shouldn’t be a problem . . . or even a consideration, for that matter.

    “And because, in some small way, you’re repaying the countless writers, journalists and bloggers who enlivened your world for a moment, or made you think, or moved you to tears or joy or laughter, simply by choosing the right words.”

    Fuck ’em! If they did it because they needed to, we’re doing them a favour by reading them, which is what they really want, not more writers competing for a dwindling clientele – is that cynical?

    “Do I have any advice for any of you struggling with the block right now? This – the only thing I’ve consistently heard and the only thing that really makes sense: Stop making excuses and just do it. If you can inject some discipline into your writing practice, even better. Most of all, just write.”

    Wrong, wrong, wrong! (Sorry about that, but I’m being honest with you.) The worst thing you can do is forge on ahead in the face of so-called “block”. You’ll only end up throwing most or all of it out, anyway. Instead, find out what the problem is and fix it. Listen to your characters, set your crap detector to high and look at your plot, whatever it takes. Then the writing will come quickly.

    “We’re writers – that’s what we do.”

    Stop it; stop it right now! That just makes it worse.

    All the best,

    Lonsdale Palmer

  61. So beautiful. I remember getting writing block for the first time when I had to hand in my thesis (which took a very long time). The gaze of the external examiner and my fear that I couldn’t write what I thought they wanted and was afraid to write what I wanted brought on a massive block!

    I hope you get to write everything you feel. All the best.

  62. Probably the hardest part about writing is the feeling of “Why am I bothering with this? No one will ever read this. Let me see what’s on TV.” Good writing takes time and effort and yet sometimes it can be difficult to get motivated when we think about the odds of becoming successfully published. Thankfully, a lot of writers find a way to power through those negative thoughts. Otherwise, some of the world’s best works would just be half-written manuscripts collecting dust in a drawer somewhere.

  63. This is a great post. I have been struggling with excuses as to why I can’t write for the last few years. I now made it so I have no more excuses and have to just do it! There’s something about the finished product that makes it so worth it!

  64. the thing that gets me about writing in this day and age is that a lot of us feel were just rehashing stuff thats already been said. were not building the furniture, just rearranging it.

  65. I agree wholeheartedly! Writing, even fiction still is derived from personal experience. This is the part that haunts me the most. The bearing it all and what will people think. I am a novice writer, nothing published. I have only recently started a new blog, one I hope to keep up with. It however, is only an outlet. I can say though I am always “writing” a story in my head. Actually they never stop! Good luck in everything you do.

  66. Great blog! I have often contemplated why I get writer’s block. I never thought of how us females tend to be perfectionist, which makes us harder critics on our own work. I have been writing a book for the past five years – Memoirs of A Mother. This is not something I want to publish, instead I am writing this for my daughter. Thanks for sharing your knowledge, this has given me a new perspective on writing!

  67. Thank you for this. I’m having the same issue. I need more discipline! Sorry you are having writer’s block but I feel better knowing I’m not alone.

  68. I am an aspiring food writer, just starting out, after the realisation that everything else I’ve done previously has kind of been telling me I should write. My first few blog entries came to me no problem and now I seem to be experiencing my first block – disaster!!
    I can relate to your post though!:
    I am a perfectionist.
    I find this job lonely!
    I am a GREAT procrastinator and can find wonderful excuses.
    I am indeed a very sensitive soul.
    I do write every day.
    Your article has shown me that I am a writer, even at this early stage. Thanks for the somewhat odd confidence boost! Reassuring post.

  69. I’m currently struggling with a bout of writer’s block. I took almost a year out of writing my novels as I’ve had my university finals to focus on. Now that they are over I just cannot bring myself to put pen to paper again. I am determined that by this evening, I will have written something new, no matter how small it is. My plan is to follow the advice of my father (not a writer but who was determined to get my through my English exams back when I was in school). He told me ‘If you get stuck, just start writing. It might be a load of poo, but some of it will not smell as bad as the rest.’ I’m glad to say I aced that exam, all because I stopped worrying about the minute details of what I was writing. And then, if all else fails, I will resort to wine. A glass of vino always helps to get the creative juices flowing!

  70. Really great post and full of helpful insights. I applaud you for actually taking a class in order to better yourself as a writer. I really think writing is difficult for every person. I wake up every day, and try to think of a topic to write. Sometimes I can’t come up with anything. However, for the past week and a half I had to force myself to write every single day no matter how short the writing was, just to “write” as you suggested. Congratulations on being Freshly Pressed!

  71. Set a routine and stick to it. I get up, write a blog post, and then sit at my computer and write until I have to go to work. 5 days a week.

    Some days are more productive than others, but the longer I’ve had this routine the easier it’s become. I need less and less warm up time, because my mind know that it’s time to get to work.

    Set a routine and daily goals and stick to them. And write every day! Even if it’s just a little.

  72. A writer needs three things: silence, exile, and cunning (a combination of artfulness and artifice).

    I hope you won’t mind a few suggestions:

    Leave the writing group. With all due respect, it is a hinderance, not a help.

    Disembroil yourself from the ravelled choking maze of caution.

    Allurement lies in mystery, not identity. Concealment and invention are just as important as honesty and reality. Writing is magic delivered from the lie of being truth.

    Write in memory, in honour of all that which and all of those whom you describe. Do not write for an imagined audience of readers. Write for the dead, not for the surviving living. Write in gratitude. Write in confession. Write in obsession. That which is most striking is least expected.

    Writers write what they are. Their writing is both an acceptance of and a revolt against fate.

    Fate may not be coerced, cajoled, or counted on. You have control only over your choices. Avoid indifference, contrivance, and complacency.

  73. Reblogged this on Sandy's Musings and commented:
    This is an excellent post, and if you didn’t have an opportunity to visit this blog, I suggest taking a moment to read and appreciate the honesty expressed, and how nicely written it was for someone….that feels they just can’t write!

  74. I just read Hermit’s Voodoo post, and I agree….I left a writer’s group I was with because I felt like a hamster on a wheel. Just going around, and around about the same stuff, all the things we feel, think, go through….I wrote my first short story …..a Halloween story and one person in my group….my writers support group had not written a very positive comment to me, and I was totally crushed, and silenced my entire blog! Lol!! Sensitive! Lol….perhaps….thought I would give it another whirl.

  75. Pingback: Link Love THURSDAY: Terrible Real Estate, Frozen and Social Media Pre-Nups | So It Must Be True

  76. I am an artist, a title I struggled with for my entire life, and now I am struggling to also call myself a writer. Everything you have said can be applied to the visual arts. All those who are involved in any of the arts will deal with blocks and times where they are not able to create. This is the nature of the creative process. The inner critic, the perfectionist inside will always need to be grappled with, but in the end the struggle is what really defines us as who we are as writers/artists/etc.

  77. I’m battling this- at the moment my word come out so block-ish, so singular , blunt and direct ….. I need to find my flow…. Thanks for the inspiration 🙂 namaste -Janaki xo

  78. I agree with every single point you’ve made here. Lately, I have come to believe that you need to create a sort of mental state and habitat to facilitate writing. I have been living in rather “temporary” conditions for some time and I do not have a desk or a corner or any such place to create a writing atmosphere. I have had a number of technical issues with my computer(including having to write on old keyboards that hurt the fingers after a few minutes). I also do not have the income or lifestyle to do something like blogging for free here. And then there is the issue of confidence and inspiration arising from not achieving the writing and other goals I wished to achieve by this time. And yet, I am finding writing much more exciting than ever because I created that space in my mind, by accident or design I don not know, to write consistently. To let the ideas come out without thinking of a platform on which they might work. People say that reading or solving other issues that inhibit writing might work to facilitate it. I think, for now at least, simply allowing yourself to write without worrying about the reality of it – income, publishers etc – might at least bring some consistency and, dare I say it, joy back.

  79. What you’ve written expresses all of my doubts as a writer. On the one hand, writers have to self-identify as writers to be writers, and not just “wannabe writers” or “aspiring writers”, but on the other hand those other doubts you’ve raised haunt me. How much must I write on a daily/weekly basis to “qualify”? How much knowledge of literature must I have?

    Thanks for the great read. Really encouraging. All the best for your creative pursuits!

  80. I found sometimes it’s good to write just anything… like I started a journal and I would just write down what I was doing or worrying about or wishing I could go do… and just writing random stuff like that which is obviously not the great books I wish to get out there one day… helped me just get back in the groove or writing what I wanted to write and not what I had to write… because going to college and having to turn out one paper after the next in perfect grammatical form that fits this criteria they’ve given me kinda started to kill my urge to write… plus once I got a blog to keep up that was taking up some of my time for writing as well… and so sometimes it’s like I have to take a break and write about nothing to get me to write about something…

  81. Yes, I love this! Some parts, I feel like you’ve read my thoughts. The one place where I differ from you is for the “every word is precious part”.I’m actually the exact opposite…for any piece of writing, whether it’s part of the book I am currently preparing, an essay back in university or a blog post for work, I generally just create word vomit and write down all my ideas about a topic. Then, when my brain is exhausted from ideas, I edit, revise, reorganize until it’s as tight as possible.

  82. Great article! Oh, the woes of being a writer! I am the perfectionist with the fragile ego. I am recently published and VERY out of my comfort zone. But these idiosyncrasies that you unveil are what make writers unusually wonderful creatures. I look forward to more of your posts.

  83. This article is the complete truth! Thank you for writing it! Your explanation of reason #2 was absolutely right. If we stop thinking we have to be perfect in our writing, we can create masterpieces naturally, without interruption.

  84. Dear, Writer:

    You wrote this piece and conveyed your message wonderfully. You are a writer. You love words, and know how to assemble them to urge a reader to stay with you. You are a writer. You’ve written in numerous careers that kept you afloat, to keep you ‘in’ words. You are a writer.

    May I suggest the blog, Goinswriter and Jeff’s book, “You Are a Writer (So start acting like one). He is a talented, reformed non-writer who has taught his Tribe that it all starts with saying first, “I am a writer.”

    Sincerely,

    Another Writer

  85. Wow this is profound. Thanks for this. I for one usually do battle in identifying myself as a writer. I am an accountant by profession but have been writing since I was in primary school . It was something I used as a therapy for myself. It is only recently that I have started sharing some of my pieces through a blog.

    Am learning alot about writing from such blogs. Am learning that a talent without knowledge is a stagnant talent. Am learning that a talent not pursued for perfection is a dead talent.

  86. sometime i get discourage because of my English because its not my first language so there is lot of grammatical mistakes . still i tried to write but when i see someone is writing with much better than me..it really discourage me..it feel like my writing is worthless..still i read and increase my vocabulary but seems i am lacking some where…

  87. “I feel with other writers, my tendency to navigate the world verbally rather than visually, and the nagging sense that I am failing in something vital when I don’t write. If you believe, as I do, that everyone has something to offer the world, then this is mine.” Reading this I encountered many thoughts that I’ve had in my own mind but have been unable to articulate. I think that’s the mark of a good writer, articulating thoughts that people have but have not been able to articulate. Great read!

  88. Pingback: On coping with writer’s block (or the lies we tell ourselves along the way) | anthonyhen

  89. Hi Crazy Nigerian,
    I’m Janice. I met you on Jason Cushman’s site. You said you looked forward to visits, so here I am.
    1. 510 people liked your post! Congratulations! How long have you been blogging?
    2. In response to your post. I agree writing is hard especially if you are a perfectionist. I disagree that writing is lonely when you are a blogger. I am writing now, alone, but not lonely. I am communicating with you; I assume all the way in Nigeria.
    I followed your blog. I look forward to reading more. Perhaps you’ll check out my blog if you need a blogging tip or two. That’s what I blog about. I saw you have a Facebook post. I recently had one too. I feel we are like-minded in our topics.
    Janice

  90. Thanks for sharing. I struggle with this more often than I’d like lol. Well written piece.

    If you would please spare some time and take a look at my most recent post titled “first of all….”, that would be fantastic. Any sharing and/or comments are encouraged.

    The post touches on how sometimes we make the mistake in getting into arguments with others, not knowing all the facts of the situation, in a comical way…

    I really hope you enjoy it, and are blessed to share.

    God Bless,
    Makhala

  91. Pingback: On coping with writer’s block (or the lies we tell ourselves along the way) | NoteBullet

  92. Pingback: gleanings from the internet–TO SHARE IS TO CARE – Debby's expression

  93. Great post, thanks so much for sharing again. I am just starting out in this writing game.. so haven’t suffered too much block yet. I have 2/3rds of the way through a self help book, which I should be working on right now, but I think a part of me knows this past phase is going to require some heavy focus and I’m therefore rambling around it rather than striding straight in! But this post is keeping me in the zone- so thanks a lot!

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