For the last six years, I’ve kept a promise to myself to write something, anything and publish it on my blog each week. Finding my love of writing has opened up a world of creativity for this middle-aged, stay-at-home mom of three. I truly love it.
Yet every so often I find myself staring at a blank computer screen, wondering what I’m going to write about. I might panic for a moment or two that I’ve exhausted everything I can from my life and have nothing left to write about. But usually once I start typing, I can manage to eek something out that I feel at least reasonably confident about letting other people read.
But every so often I suffer from an epic case of writer’s block. Try as I may, I can think of absolutely nothing. Zilch. Nada.
Lucky for me I’ve developed a no-fail strategy to ban the block, which I graciously share with you today.
Moan, groan, and complain that you have nothing left to write about. Use a very dramatic voice for more effect. If you can conjure up some tears, it will totally add to the “poor me” effect.
Sit down and try to write. Again. Start and throw out 10 essay false-starts.
Ask all your writing and blogging friends for ideas about overcoming writer’s block. Love the ideas about unplugging from the computer and walking away from writing. Hate the ideas about having to just sit down and write because if there’s one thing you don’t want to do to get over your block, it’s write.
Remind yourself that your friends are talented writers and successful bloggers, feel intimidated, quit writing, and take up underwater basket weaving.
Spend some time thinking about whether there’s something actually called underwater basket weaving, or if it was just something your high school choir director would tell you would be your major in college because clearly you would never be good enough for anything else.
Go into the kitchen where the family is eating a late lunch and beg husband for an idea.
Get into argument with husband when he tells you that the only way through your writer’s block is to sit down and write. If you feel up to it, throw back in his face all you’ve done to help him over the 24 years you’ve been married.
Plead with all three of your children for an idea, any idea. Perhaps remind them that without you they would not exist.
Dismiss your daughter’s idea of writing about princesses and your youngest’s suggestion about writing about one of his four trips to the emergency room. Not because they’re not good ideas, but because you’ve already written about them.
Decide that you’ve exhausted every idea from your life worth mentioning. You might want to throw in a few more minutes of deep self pity.
Look around for a snack that is only 2 Weight Watchers points because you blew 5 points on the chocolate that you swore would end the writer’s block. Sadly it did not.
Start to get not-so-secretly annoyed by teenage son, who has clearly become too much like his father when he sarcastically suggests writing about something completely different, like being the mom to three kids.
Now that your husband is laughing along with son, go ahead and give the man a very dirty look. Make note of the fact that he gives son secret hand sign to let the poor child know he better quit teasing his mother because husband knows his wife, and he knows that any minute she is going to eat her firstborn.
Grab another cup of coffee and go back into your office, which is really just a small corner of the bedroom. Look at the blank computer screen. Again.
When all of that fails to work, write an essay about the ways that you deal with writer’s block.
This column is an updated version of a piece that ran of the Dishwasher, August 31, 2014, under the title, Fifteen Ways to Break the Block.
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Andrea Brovetto says
Cute! Love it!!
Love you Mom
Lisa @TheGoldenSpoons says
I have had witer’s block for over a year now! I’ve followed a version of this process very often! 😉
Janine Huldie says
All great advice and I usually walk away from the computer from a bit when this happens. Something about living life helps get my writing juices flowing when all else fails 😉
Janine Huldie recently posted…Luvs Diapers Coupon Offer
LOL. Read the last line and thought, “16. When you’ve already written the list referred to in 15, refresh it like there’s no tomorrow and pop it back up again because it will never not be relevant.” Well done my dear. I always have good ideas to conquer writer’s block (when it’s not my own). Feel free to hit me up.
Sheila Qualls says
Have been reading about writer’s block a lot lately, trying to overcome. I have not tried some of you suggestions (except the husband ones).