"Horrid Writers Block" exchange

Nicole began the exchange with this plea sent to all members of eWeb  and within 2 days received 5 replies, all directed to her alone at her TeenLit email alias.

9/25/99, Mail to Group

Subject:  The Horrid Writer's Block

Hey everyone. I was just wondering if there was any one else here that is as unfortuNate as me, to get the wonderful WB? Anyone's suggestions on how to overcome this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!



9/25/99, Email

Subject:  Re: The Horrid Writer's Block

Nicole, I know EXACTLY how you feel. Just the other

day I couldn't write a darned thing. I usually just

whip out a blank sheet and start scrawling, and by the

time I'm done I have a poem or story. Not so, in this

case. NOTHING.

How I overcome my writing block when it rears is

ugly head is simply this; listen to some quiet music,

watch a cool movie, and/or look through some old

writings of yours. If all else fails, take a night or

two to sleep on it. And don't get too upset. If you

worry, it will only get worse. Above all, don't try to

force the writing. If you look at your blank sheet of

paper and nothing comes, put it away and try an hour

later. Good luck, my friend, and if you ever want to

talk or contact me again, feel free. I love hearing

from you guys!



9/25/99, Email

Subject:  Re: The Horrid Writer's Block

Oki doke.

writer's block is usually in the mind. if you think too much about writing,  then obviously, you won't be experiencing and feeling what's already going  on around you, thus not being inspired. i know that you aren't' always  writing about experience, but basic life is what gives us the fuel to  create. live! go outside and just sit in the sun, or think about  ourself [sic]   think about what you want to do, what you've done, maybe someone you've  never thought about. i know this sounds a little random, but while thinking  about this, you aren't focusing on your block.

love (or something)



9/26/99, Email

Subject:  Re: The Horrid Writer's Block

Hello Nicole,

        Yes, I have gotten Writer's Block before, and yes, it is rather frustrating. But just like the common cold, there is no definite cure as yet, at least, not that I know of. :-) However, there are some things that you could do that might help trigger off a return of your thoughts and ideas, and make the words flow again.

        When you find it hard to write, sometimes it helps to retreat to a quiet place, somewhere close to nature. The peace of a natural atmosphere always helps calm my thoughts, and helps me focus better.

        Also, if you have Writer's Block because you've been trying and trying to write on a particular subject and the words just don't seem like they want to come, get your pen and paper or open up your word processor, and just try to write about the first thing that comes to your mind. Just write down whatever words come to you. Once you get your creativity flowing again, then you can get back to what you were trying to write before, and channel your thoughts to help you finish writing what you were writing.

        Those are two things that have helped me before. Other times, when I just can't seem to be able to write, I give the writing a rest for a little while, and focus my mind on other things. Sort of like reverse psychology. Once, I was trying to write a poem for a friend, and I just couldn't find the right words, and I gave up and took a shower, and in the middle of the shower, words just started coming to me out of nowhere, and before I knew it, the poem was done. :-)

Good luck,


P.S. Inspiration always helps.


9/26/99, Email

Subject:  Re: The Horrid Writer's Block

i've heard so much stuff about writers block.   everything from, "it's just another part of the creative process," to "writers block isn't real, it's a writer's excuse for not writing."  while both these answers seem rather pious or patronizing or something- i think in their own way their both right.  we  control our own road blocks....  so what i do when i have writers block is to  go experience some aspect of life i have never experienced before and that is  bound to make the writing 'juices' flow...  anyway, hope there was something  useful here and not just a bunch of random rambling!



9/27/99, Email

Subject:  Re: The Horrid Writer's Block

Hey, I just read an article that gave some pretty good advice, it's by Anne Lamott, it's called "Shitty first drafts" and it's really good if you want  to read it sometime, she says:

"What I've learned to do when I sit down to work on a shitty first draft is to quiet the voices in my head...

Hope I could help, good luck!

Matt (a writer)