I have writer’s block, and I’m not afraid to admit it. I have been struggling with this chapter for my fan-fiction story a little over a week now. Four times I have deleted all 9,000+ words that were written and started over. I am frustrated and disappointed with myself.
My story has hummed along nicely, growing by 1 – 2 chapters every week. Most of my chapters are 6,000 to 9,000 words in length, and I find that most of the time, words come easy. For this chapter, however, I have hit a brick wall. I am having a difficult time finding the right words to convey the story. Paragraphs consist of nothing more than disjunctive ramblings that disrupt the flow on every page and are a far cry from the straightforward prose of other chapters. The eloquence I so desperately seek seems foreign to me as I stare dumbly at the screen in front of me. Rarely does this happen, but when it does, it is as if that block transcends all things and becomes quite debilitating in other areas as well.
While unrelated, I stared at a window of PHP code today for my website. I have spent years doing web development and programming. Today, I was unable to enter the right lines of code needed to achieve the desired goal. There is no setting the scene or describing how one character interacts with another. It is just simple code. Nevertheless, I still reached an impasse and had to step away for a while. Not only has my writer’s block dampened my writing, but it had also dampened my creativity as well. Even now, I am struggling as I write this article.
So, what do I do? I’ve read various blogs and articles on ways to deal with writer’s block. They offer several suggestions, most of which I found to be of very little help. I can try all the writing exercises in the world, but none of them would do me a lick of good. Every author seems to be some expert on how to overcome it, but they all have different solutions. And with that, I have determined that solving writer’s block boils down to two fundamental things:
1. Find the root cause of what’s ailing you and fix it. Everyone’s problem is different while they may have similar notes of familiarity among writers. Do some soul-searching and find yours.
2. The solution you pick will work for you and only you. Long walks in the park, listening to music, or forcing yourself into a writing schedule may not work for you. There is no one-size fits all answer to this. You have to find a method that best works for you.
That’s it. That’s the only sage wisdom I impart. And hopefully, I will find my cure after good night’s rest.