How to Fight Writer’s Block

We all get there, whether we write columns for a newspaper,
technical journals or novels. A point when all the words
hide behind the furniture, and we can’t even think in prose.

It feels as if there had been a Muse, sitting somewhere
above and behind us, who has, without a by your leave,
stepped out.

When this happens to you, trying to force the words is not
going to help. Even proofreading your own work to build
a ‘vibe’ is not useful.

Meditating, going on those long walks, searching the night
sky for inspiration, doesn’t work.

What do you do?

You do puzzles, you dance, you watch T.V. you play a game,
you get into an argument, you clean the house. Abandon your
work space, forget all about writing and do something else.

Do something else with full concentration. Every time
writing comes to the front of your mind, chase it back
into your subconscious.

Whatever you’re doing which is not writing, devote yourself
to it. Even when you feel a thought coming on, push it back
into the subconscious and continue to do whatever non-writing
you are doing.

It might take a day, two days, but suddenly, like Athena,
the work will appear before you full grown. You will race
to your workspace and transcribe what exists in your mind,
without thinking about it.

Like Suduku, when you don’t know where the next number goes,
you leave the puzzle, then come back with ‘fresh eyes,’ when
you leave your writing because you have written yourself into
a corner, when you return you will see the door in the wall.

Too often we try to make a creative process into a logical
procedure. Not only doesn’t this work, but it damages
creativity.

By trying to force yourself to think creatively you are
building strictures to prevent it.

By abandoning all the process, giving it time to rebuild
you are doing more work than attempting to complete
‘writing exercises’.

Writer’s Block is caused by too much pressure being put
on that part of your mind where creativity resides.

By removing the pressure, your thoughts arise unfettered,
and splash around, some sink, some swim, but you have
no part in their existence.

When your ideas are ready, they will burst into your
consciousness, and you won’t be able to stop them.

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