When I’m not happy with my writing, I spend more time listening, looking, reading, touching, & tasting other people’s creativity to feed my own. Its been and amazing three months of Alpha, Beta reading and editing. I have read some incredible manuscripts and some not so incredible. But in saying this, its all the reason I do it, because of my own experience and understanding of the written word, I can help those that are the “some not” and encourage those that are to go above and beyond their capabilities. I want someone to do this for me. Just to have that push to say yes, this works, no this does not. Another set of eyes, another mind. All this is so detrimental to a writer. Especially one that is passionate about what they are writing.
In saying this I have to ask my self questions. (Why am I stuck? Is it the piece? Am I feeling balanced enough in other areas in my life to flourish in my writing? Am I tired? Are the idea and the genre of what I’m working on agreeing with each other? Am I experiencing a road block or a directive to try something else?) Sometimes, writing is super hard. Just like any other job. Or, if it’s not your job, sometimes it’s hard to do a thing even if it is your hobby. But no plumber ever gets to call in to work, and they’re like “Buddy, I have plumber’s block,” you know? What would your boss say?! I have teacher’s block. I have Barista block. They would say “You are fired! You have problems and you are fired. Get your ass in here and plumb some stuff, Lynda!” It is exhausting to be obsessed and driven and full of some pressing need to write—and then it doesn’t happen.
Another option I believe is to write through it, to write every ugly, horrible sentence that comes to mind and just work until I find something of value. I am a firm believer that every bit of writing is a necessary part of the process, and I’ve come to trust that on the other side of the “block” is something new and exciting waiting for me.
“ There comes a point in your life
when you need to stop reading other people’s books
and write your own.”