Being a writer is hard.
Unlike other forms of art like photography, theatre, and videography, writers have to use strictly words to convey their emotions.
Writers can’t just frown for you to know that they’re sad. Writers say, “The woman looked down, her lip trembling as she listened to the love of her life go.”
But what happens when writers can’t write?
It comes out of nowhere, completely blocking all productivity. Writer’s block doesn’t care if you have a deadline or you’ve procrastinated so hard that you only have 2 hours to turn in a paper.
We all know the feeling, though you may not have known its name.
Staring at a blank Word document, feeling your ideas flowing through you, but being unable to articulate them.
The worst part of writer’s block is the feeling of helplessness that comes with it.
Being unable to write makes you feel completely useless. It makes you feel like you can’t think, that your brain has shut down and will not let you do anything to open it back up.
It’s like you’ve suddenly forgotten everything that you know, everything that you were thinking.
Writer’s block can ruin your creative process, no matter how passionate you are about it.
I have been in the process of writing a novel for the past year. To hold myself accountable, I also started blogging along with it. Things went really well the first few weeks, and I had really high hopes that something would come from this.
Then, the writer’s block struck.
The idea that I had been working on for years suddenly became something that I couldn’t stand to look at. Every time that I thought about the characters I was once so passionate about, I would cringe.
My passion became something that I hated.
So, I started over. I created a whole new idea, new characters, new plots, and guess what came from that?
I haven’t been able to write a single word of it. I’m constantly staring at a blank screen, willing the scenes I’ve created in my head to write themselves, because I obviously can’t do them justice.
I’ve been in this vicious cycle of ideas, creating and then destroying character after character, plot line after plot line in my head, trying and retrying to sit down at my computer and just write one sentence at a time.
The writer’s block keeps winning.
It isn’t just my creative works that are suffering, it’s seeping over into everything.
I am at the mercy of my own brain here and, for some strange reason, it doesn’t want to do the one thing that it’s actually good at.
There isn’t a way to get rid of it either. Other writers suggest long walks, cups of tea, and talking out your ideas with other writers.
Those aren’t solutions, they’re distractions.
The only thing that you can do to get rid of writer’s block is to give it time.
So, until it decides to go away, I’ll be staring at a blank page, pressing a pencil to my temple and hoping that I can articulate what I want to say.
Writing is hard.