W – Writer’s Block

WAh, Writer’s Block. That scourge of writers the world over. I suppose. Is it though? What are some of the elements of Writer’s Block?

For me, the very first and major hurdle of Writer’s Block is how to start. I, like many writers I imagine, have a number of stories mapped out in my head, notes hidden around in margins, on smart phones, tablets, writing programs. When do you know enough? About your characters, your setting? Do you understand it all? Have you read enough to know that no one else has already written your story? And how do you hook your readers?

This is a hard wall to get past, for sure. As best I understand, at some point you just have to start. For me, that’s still a work in progress.

Once you’re going, maybe you started too soon! Oh no, how do you resolve this part? Describe this scene? How do you convey to your readers exactly what you feel when you think about it? Or maybe you know time needs to pass, but don’t know what might happen between where you’re coming from and where you’re going. Maybe you need to give another character some time in the sun, but aren’t sure what to have happen.

Or maybe Writer’s Block is just your excuse – your excuse for having a life, for letting time get away from you, for not being as diligent in writing as you feel like you ought to be. Because while the largest category is likely the books never written, there is still very likely a very large selection of books started but unfinished. It’s an easy trap to fall into. It’s life.

And then there’s towards the end, you have a written story! But you’re editing. Thinking it through, revising. Have you developed your voice enough? Have you used good language to convey your points and story? And is it something unique, something that hasn’t been written before? Is it something new under the sun?

At some point you have to let it go, have to decide it’s good enough. Not everyone can be J.K. Rowling or George Lucas and edit their works after they’re already published. But before you reach that point, you can likely hit the hardest road blocks, the most doubt: is it good enough? Will anyone, in their right mind – or at least the mind they bring to the table on the day they’re making the decision – publish it? Would you even self-publish it yourself? As you might be your hardest critic, after all.

I can see a lot of things we might mean by Writer’s Block. Once I get going, in a single session, I tend not to stop when writing – I tend to flow. For me, the trouble is getting started, is having the time, is taking the time. How about you? Any Writer’s Block stories or tips to share? Venture forth to the comments below! Can’t think of what to comment about? Writer’s Block strikes again!


About CompGeeksDavid
Co-founder, editor, podcaster, web comicer, forum moderator, and writer for Comparative Geeks. Father, husband, geek, nerd, gamer, librarian, Christian, Libertarian, Science Fiction philosopher, and probably a number of other descriptors.

7 Responses to W – Writer’s Block

  1. Big, big topic. I loved how you personalized it. Awesome post!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. yaykisspurr says:

    I totally agree. I have trouble starting. I rarely have writer’s block unless I’ve gone wrong in my thinking somewhere and then you just have to realize it and backtrack so you can rethink what’s happening. Writing really is a commitment and you really have to want to make the time in your life to pursue it as anything but a hobby. Cheers.

    BTW David your posts do flow really well and you tend to keep the point central to one idea which is a good thing for a blogger!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much! I first saw this post briefly on my phone and it left me smiling 🙂

      As someone else who tends to flow, I have been thinking a lot about the more deliberate sort of writing that Gene’O has been describing over on The Writing Catalog… It leaves me thinking that while I might flow writing as I go, it is in Revision (http://gno112.wordpress.com/2014/04/21/a-to-z-day-18-revision-2/) that I might get hung up – and have before!

      I am working on getting past the hobby phase, and I think that having over a year of consistent blogging under my belt has helped. It really does help with forming an expectation that I am going to be writing, has me practicing writing while multi-tasking (watching shows or movies, especially), and has generally been a great experience. That said, finding time to write AND continuing to blog – haven’t figured that one out yet!


  3. Usually with me it’s having trouble getting started that’s the source of my writer’s block. Or I get a couple sentences or paragraphs into a post and get stuck. Fortunately this doesn’t happen often! Stopping by from the A to Z 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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