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nat_austrl
October 18th, 2006, 07:47 AM
Over the last year I have been doing a Professional Writing and Editing course down in Australia. During this year I have encountered an extraordinary devision amonge both students and teachers alike over wether or not there is such a thing as writer's block. So, I thought I'd do an experiment and see if people are as sharply devided over the matter of writer's block on this website as well.

Do you ever experience writers block and if so, how do you get over it?

Something I found quite funny was a woman who came to my college to speak on corperate writing said in responce to a question that she did not believe there was such a thing as writer's block. Yet, in her very next breath she had a "mentle block" while explaining her reasoning. How can someone have a mentle block and yet not have experienced or believe in writers block?

Anyway, its just an interesting thought I've been been wanting to explore.

PlanetRetcon
October 18th, 2006, 08:39 AM
Over the last year I have been doing a Professional Writing and Editing course down in Australia. During this year I have encountered an extraordinary devision amonge both students and teachers alike over wether or not there is such a thing as writer's block. So, I thought I'd do an experiment and see if people are as sharply devided over the matter of writer's block on this website as well.

Do you ever experience writers block and if so, how do you get over it?

I have. I write these days on a fairly strict schedule. I pretty much HAVE TO get whatever it is i'm writing done before moving on. In those cases, Writer's block is a killer. When I'm on a more relaxed schedule, writer's block in one project has always been writer's boon in another.



Something I found quite funny was a woman who came to my college to speak on corperate writing said in responce to a question that she did not believe there was such a thing as writer's block. Yet, in her very next breath she had a "mentle block" while explaining her reasoning. How can someone have a mentle block and yet not have experienced or believe in writers block?

I assume you mean "Mental" block :D Those are quite different things. A mental block is when you can't remember what you were going to say, or some fact that you had memorized. Writer's block is when you stare at a blank piece of paper or computer screen and can't imagine where to go next. They have as much in common as eitehr of them does to a road block or a block of cheese.

nat_austrl
October 18th, 2006, 09:15 AM
Oh yeah, "Mental", Oops!:eek:

Yeah you are probably right about that, but it just seemed funny to me that she had one kind of block while talking about another. :)

juzzza
October 18th, 2006, 09:37 AM
Many people do not believe that 'Depression' or 'Dyslexia' for that matter, actually exist. As with everything, try telling that to someone who is actually going through it.

Maybe writer's block if it exists, is 'managed' by the same part of the brain that deals with phobias. Try telling someone irrationally scared of spiders that they are just being silly...

KatG
October 18th, 2006, 11:55 AM
I know we've gone several rounds on Writers Block in other threads before, so you might want to check the archives -- that little Search button at the top of the screen.

My position has always been that there are many different types of Writers Block, so you sort of have to identify what you're dealing with. Some are more easily dealt with than others. A lot of them can be broken by just writing and not worrying about what you are writing. Some of them are story-related.

Avi Morgan
October 18th, 2006, 07:19 PM
juzza makes a good point. Deciding it doesn't exist, doesn't mean that people no longer experience it. There are so many little exercises that get rid of it, some work for one person and fail with the next, and they find something else that helps them. Its a very mental thing.

I think maybe people ought to examine their circumstances. I find whenever I'm going through a stressful time I can't write at all. Many times I just don't want to write but I feel like I need to, so I sit staring at the screen, other times I want to write something so bad that I won't write anything that comes to mind because it "isn't good enough". ( All writer's are perfectionist to some extent ;) )

When I was younger I would get writer's block all the time. One thing I would do is get a blank piece of paper and just write anything that came to mind. Almost like a "say the first word that you think of" but in a long line :p . Sometimes what I wrote didn't make sense, but they were definitely amusing. Like "my tomato has a piece of bacon to give to the dog down the road, but the dog won't take it, he doesn't like bacon, poor tomato" (that's actually in one of my old notebooks).

Overall, I think writer's block exists simply because people make it. I'm not sure I think you could link writer's block to something direct, and get rid of it. It seems a little like a personal thing, a bit different for every writer.

James Barclay
October 19th, 2006, 07:11 AM
...and my position is that I don't believe in it. You can always write something. Just not necessarily on your current project. If I'm stuck on a scene, I go and write something else to get the cogs shifting again. Doesn't matter what it is.

I do believe in sloth, lack of motivation and being unable to see the wood for the trees when I'm writing. None of these amount to WB. The danger is that writer's shrug and say 'well I would write but I have this terrible writer's block, you see...' Bad excuse.

NOM

Shadowstorm
October 19th, 2006, 10:12 AM
Writer's block may exist, but I have never experienced one. Perhaps a fault of my education where most english lessons tended to have have essay writing in one form or another. That and numerous short story competitions,exams...etc..,. means I have never experienced that unique problem of never knowing what to write. What I have experienced in unaccountable laziness on my part to actually write every day. I have the words swirling around in the old head, but a weak will to actually do something about it.

And nope I cant use schedules either, before you suggest it. It will mean something that is a joy/hobby becoming work. I been in numerous classes/tests where you were required to write an essay based on a one liner given to you or a picture. You might want to practise similar techniques, might help you greatly when it comes to writers block.

SKK
October 19th, 2006, 10:59 AM
I think that... uh... errr... hmmm... can't think of what to say, for some reason.


Something I found quite funny was a woman who came to my college to speak on corperate writing said in responce to a question that she did not believe there was such a thing as writer's block.

AAUGH! Now I don't exist!

mistri
October 22nd, 2006, 06:41 PM
I'm not sure I believe in 'writers block' as such, but I believe that writers can be blocked :D

Let me explain. When I moved house last year, and spent six months looking for a new job, I became a little depressed. I had plenty of free time, and lots of reasons to write. Yet I couldn't. All I wanted to do was escape from the pressures of job hunting, so I spent a lot of time playing videogames. I didn't want to do anything that made me think too much - because (even when writing) I would inevitably wander on to thinking about my fears.

I, personally, was blocked - but it wasn't anything to do with my writing. When I lifted myself out of the depression I could write again. And since then, whenever I feel blocked, it's usually because something other than writing is bothering me.

Sometimes I get lost in the story and need to stop and outline (yes, I'm an outliner, sorry!) until I know where I'm going again. I don't think this is writer's block either.

It's not hard to sit there and put words down. But it's sometimes hard to get a clear mind to do so freely.