Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Breaking the Block

James: The doors made so much noise!
Tripp: Is he all right?
James: It was so embarrassing! He had to be carried out.
Terry: He's fine. He's narrating.
James: They were going to the restroom. But would they make it in time?
-Wonderboys

At one point in the movie, Tripp says he doesn't believe in writer's block. I don't think I do either. Sure, there are times, like now, when I feel it's just not working and struggle to write anything. However, I think the phrase "writer's block" is a cop-out.

Right now I'm taking a break from Oracle, but having a hard time shifting back to writing short stories. I'm falling into the pattern of being able to start stories with no problem, but being unable to figure out where they go after the first few paragraphs/pages. This is the first time in many years that I've had to fight so hard to finish a short story. I'm frustrated as all-get-out and this weekend is the next writers group meeting, which means if I plan to submit this month, I need to get my butt in gear fast. *Sigh*

Fortunately, I've got that writer's gene that means a little pressure usually helps me churn something out. It's all about the deadline, eh?

What about the rest of you? Do you believe in writers block and/or how do you overcome it?

1 comment:

Debbie said...

Ali,

Interesting question. I know there are times when it's much harder to make myself sit down and write. The inspiration doesn't seem to be there. Some call that writer's block.

I have managed a few times to "power through" and just keep putting one word after the other until they started to flow more easily. But that seems to make it that much harder to sit down the next day.

Instead I prefer to do what Neil Gaiman says he does--cheat and write something else. So I try to be working on at least two different projects at the same time. Doesn't mean I put words on paper (or screen) every day, but I'm thinking about one story or the other every day.