On a personal level, I would define writer’s block as feelings of frustration when you want to write but nothing is quite coming to you: you’re just not quite sure how to continue with your blog post, or chapter of a book… or how to tie up a plot lines. It can happen when you’re not feeling particularly inspired; or maybe you’re just stuck. It can create boredom in usually very enjoyable act. For me anyway.
The words, “I have nothing to write” exit my mouth, paired with a sigh. I know it’s not true, but I need a reason for why there are no new words on the page in front of me. I couldn’t possibly admit that I don’t want to write my book.
I’m not particularly patient when it comes to life, particularly figuring stuff out, and so I can be prone to just giving up when things get a little difficult. Especially when it comes to writer’s block. Instead of finishing off a challenging blog post, I’ll grumpily let it sit in my drafts folder, the ideas rotting away with 40 or so others.
It was no surprise that I would get writer’s block at some point with my book. The first 25,000 words were suspiciously breezy, but now every time I stared at the page, a blank sheet would stare back menacingly… When I actually wrote anything, it was boring. What would start as funny little anecdote, would be boring to write. I’d feel like I had to jot my memories before they escape my scatty mind. Rather than stringing out each line, relishing in every noun and verb, I’d rush to get some sort of crap onto the page.
The more I got bored, the more I found myself distracted. No longer swept up in my own little book world, I succumbed to every crumb procrastination has to offer; addicted to that social media high, rebelling against what writing had now become: work.
One day I got rid of the pointless social media distractions in order to work through the writer’s block. I deleted the Instagram app; and replaced it with the Guardian. I decided I didn’t want to be an addict anymore, and thought that next time I find myself scrolling through my phone, at least I can learn something new; something to inspire me… Or at least clue me in with the latest Brexit happenings. This, of course, made me feel smart for a couple of weeks, and then very depressed. I think it is very important to teach yourself about politics, but it is also important to not bum yourself out for the sake of trying to be clever. Maybe it was an extra depressing news cycle.
The issue was, I was no less distracted. When I sat down to write, I found myself checking when my car tax was due; signing up to a new doctors surgery (both which were more helpful than scrolling down Instagram- that much is true); making shopping lists. When there’s a will (to procrastinate), there’s a way.
So I downloaded Instagram again, and then wrote this blog post.
The point of this little post is, I guess, to get myself writing something that I enjoy- mostly my feelings towards stuff: and just generally getting words on a page, and editing them into some sort of form, which I have now achieved. I cured my writer’s block by writing about my writer’s block.
The whole situation made me realise that, if I’m having a shit time writing, I’m probably writing shit. So I stopped forcing myself to write about boring things.
Thanks for reading 🙂
Header photo: by Lum3n.com