Hello, my dear readers!
I apologize for my prolonged absence, but I am back now! First things first, why I was gone. I wish I could say something exciting – like we had a new addition to the family or I went on a tour of Europe or I was super busy with friends or I was traveling and visiting family. But the truth is, although I did have a very busy summer with work and friends, that is not the real reason I haven’t written to you in so long.
Simply put, I
was lazy and had writer’s block. I couldn’t write anything in my novel, and anytime I sat down to blog, I simply couldn’t get my novel out of my head.
So here I am writing to you only because my dreaded writer’s block is gone, and this post that I have been working on for the past month is finally coming together.
Given my mental state for the past few weeks, and the fact that I have kinda sorta overcome it, I am here to share how I battled my writer’s block.
And I did it in one step.
You ready for this?
I didn’t battle my writer’s block, y’all. I have seen so many authors and bloggers write about “5 ways to cure writer’s block” or “10 ways to avoid writer’s block” or “how to overcome writer’s block”. And I am not trying to crash your party, but the truth is why do we all suffer from writer’s block?
Because writer’s block is part of the writing process – just like editing, revising, and rewriting. We do not avoid those aspects of the writing process. We embrace them.
Same goes for writer’s block. It is like a paralyzing sickness that you need to let run its course. It will end, but you must be patient. I tried fighting it at first, and I only became more frustrated and impatient. When I did “conquer” it, I went back to reread through what I had written after the writer’s block disappeared and I hated it. It sounded forced and fake.
When I began to embrace my writer’s block, I spent time doing other things and just rolling my story over in my mind. I even began to listen to my character – especially my main character – who I’m sure we all know runs the show more than I ever could. If you listen to your writer’s block, you will realize you aren’t necessarily out of ideas, so much as your characters and story are trying to tell you something – about a setting, about character development, about another twist in the plot.
For weeks, I listened and I took notes. A couple nights ago, I sat down and punched out a couple thousand words in roughly a one and a half hour period, drawing from my notes and my thoughts and my characters’ suggestions. In the end, what they wanted me to write sounded so much more cohesive and beautiful than what I had ever written on my own.
In the end, authoring is a partnership. Work with your characters. Learn to understand them, to listen to them, to take their advice, and to trust them and to trust their suggestions. Do not be afraid of writer’s block, do not try to avoid it, and certainly do not try to fight it. Let it flow through you and let it grow your mind and your ideas. Writing is never just the words you think of – it’s also the emotions and thoughts that you experience and share with your characters.
That is how you “battle” writer’s block.