Notes from An Alien

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Tag Archives: fear of writing

#WritersBlock ~ Is It Real or Just a Figment of Your Imagination?

If you’re a writer, you may feel you’ve experienced writer’s block—if you’re not a writer and know one, share this article with them… 

So, some writers are sure this blocking is real—some (like me) never have it

My Best Friend (an exceptional author) feels that any block for a writer isn’t really about their ability to write coming to a stop—more like another kind of hindrance—a holding of part of themselves away from themselves.

At least that’s what I’m interpreting my writer-friend meant

So, what if it is a figment of imagination?

What’s a “figment”?

My Oxford dictionary says: “An invented statement , story , doctrine , etc.”.


If we consider fiction writers, their whole purpose is to invent statements, fabricate stories, create doctrines, etc.


So, if writer’s block isn’t “real” but only a figment, a writer should be able to write their way out of it, right?

But, for those who still feel it as a reality, I’ll share some excerpts from an article on LifeHacker-AustraliaThe 10 Types Of Writers’ Block (And How To Overcome Them).

All I’ll share here are the 10 types (with my brief comments)—do go to the full article for their ways to overcome it

1. You can’t come up with an idea.

All I’ll say here is that you might want to consider rephrasing that—I can’t seem to come up with an idea

2. You have a ton of ideas but can’t commit to any of them, and they all peter out.

This one seems over-complicated in its expression—my advice: pick one, commitment or not, and start writing—if that peters out, pick another and continue

3. You have an outline but you can’t get through this one part of it.

I had a detailed outline for my short novel—it was bleeding to death from slashes and overwrites by the fourth chapter—I “rewrote” the outline

4. You’re stuck in the middle and have no idea what happens next.

Well, make something up—use those figments that are always lying around; and, if you don’t see any figments, make some up :-)

5. You have a terrible feeling your story took a wrong turn a hundred pages back, and you only just hit a dead end.

Shame on you—back up 110 pages and reviseIf you still hit that “dead end”, back up further and start again

6. You’re bored with all these characters, they won’t do anything.

Well, they are Your characters—you’re responsible for what they do (usually). Perhaps you need to reconsider the plot—maybe the characters don’t like what you expect them to do and are just on strike.

7. You keep imagining all the reasons people are going to say your story sucks, and it paralyses you.

If this one doesn’t sound like something besides “writer’s block”—perhaps lack of self-confidence or an overactive imagination—you might want to consider throwing the whole thing away and writing, instead, your autobiography

8. You can’t think of the right words for what you’re trying to convey in this one paragraph.

Oh, my—set it aside for awhile? Back up 10 paragraphs and start over?

9. You had this incredibly cool story in your head, and now you’re turning it into words on a screen and it’s suddenly dumb.

Oh, my, again—grab a few figments and create another cool story!

10. You’re revising your work, and you can’t see your way past all those blocks of text you already wrote.

My response for this one is to quote part of what the full article says about it:

“I’m going to go out on a limb and say that if you’re getting stuck during revisions, that’s not any type of Writer’s Block (as nebulous a concept as Writer’s Block is), but rather just the natural process of trying to diagnose what ails your novel.”

Check out the whole article—share it with other writers—let me know what you think in the comments :-)
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Do People Know That You Write?

Everyone writes, at least a little—just because we have to—if only to sign our name at times.

Some folks write a lot, on purpose and on deadline—usually as freelancers, concocting what others want.

Then, there are the “creative writers”—some very business-like, some way around the bend of normality.

Another “class” of writer is the person who isn’t writing yet, or has done a little and wonders if they’ll ever get back to it.

I call someone who hasn’t done much more than sign checks, yet would like to write a lot more, a writer because so much of creative writing happens before, and in between, pen on paper or fingers on keys.

Writing, in a deeply important sense, is all about what’s inside the writer. What ends up outside the writer, as a book or a series of essays, is quite often felt by the writer as no longer “theirs”—sometimes to the point where they actually say it came from “beyond them”

So, sliding back to the point of this post: If you’re a creative writer, even if all the words are still inside, do other people know you’re a writer?

If they don’t, why haven’t you told them?

Teralyn Rose Pilgrim wrote a guest post for Nathan Bransford back in May called, Do You Tell People You Write?.

The kind of responses Teralyn chronicles from those who’ve been told she’s a writer could be the major reason many people never utter a word about an activity they invest in with heart and soul

If I copied them here, I’d be “stealing” nearly her whole post—do go read it, but only if you can answer yes to more than one of these questions:

If you’ve told folks you write, do you most often wish you hadn’t?

If you haven’t told folks you write, is it because you fear the reaction you might get?

Is there a particular person you revealed your writing to who made you wonder about your sanity?

Is there a particular person you haven’t told your secret to who you think would love to know?

Do you feel you’re a writer even though you’ve never put the words and ideas inside you on paper or screen?

By the way, there’s no penalty for answering one of those questions in our comments :-)
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