What’s the matter, writer? That blank page in front of you got you down?
You say your bucket of creative motivation is empty? You fear the procrastination monster has come to stay? And the writer’s block is too big to overcome so you’re waiting for the magic writing fairy to land on your shoulder and deliver perfect pages of prose, sublime sonnets, or perhaps inspirational ideas?
Well, get over it. It isn’t going to happen.
Here’s a newsflash: Your dreamy muse is busy elsewhere with a happy rainbow unicorn in a field of delicious, colorful jelly beans under a marshmallow sky and not likely to return anytime soon.
In the meantime, here’s a word of advice, a solution to your problem: write.
“Bad writing precedes good writing. This is an infallible rule, so don’t waste time trying to avoid bad writing. (That just slows down the process.) Anything committed to paper can be changed. The idea is to start and go from there.” –Janet Hulstrand
“Self-doubt, exhaustion, and confusion are part of the process. Embrace them and don’t stop writing to examine what you have. The world is full of people trying to perfect chapter one.” –Kerry Greenwood
“If you are struggling with writing a character, write 20 things a reader will never know about your character. These will naturally bleed into your writing and provide a richness even though you don’t share the detail.” –Barbara Poelle
I discovered this list of top ten tips on how to survive a relationship with a writer over at www.writerswrite.co.za
Numbers 4, 5, and 10 are definitely sage advice.
Top Ten Tips
1. Never ever ask when the book will be published.
2. Do not ask a writer if they wished they’d written the latest best seller.
3. Never say you’re writing a book. Never ever say you’d also write a book if you only had the time.
4. Don’t call the police if you happen to see a writer’s browsing history. The average writer is not planning to poison you, hire a hit man, or move to Afghanistan. It’s simply research.
5. Leave the writer alone when the writer is actually writing. You have no idea how difficult it is to enter the zone.
6. Don’t pick unfair fights with a writer. Writers do get their revenge in print.
7. If you do want to fight, make it memorable. The writer is always looking for material.
8. If your writer wanders off to a party, don’t panic. Writers love to inspect the host’s bookshelves and medicine cabinets.
9. Buy your writer notebooks and cute pens as gifts. Do not buy flowers. Chocolate is also acceptable.
10. Leave your writer alone when a rejection letter arrives. After the deadly silence, screaming, crying, moaning have subsided, offer your writer a cup of coffee or tea. And a cupcake. Add a huge hug.
Anyone care to add to the list?
Here’s my addition:
11. When your writer is sobbing at the keyboard and staring at a blank screen, bring one bottle of wine (glass optional) and quietly leave without comment.
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