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December 30, 2010

I don’t believe in writer’s block.

What people call writer’s block is, in my estimation, a combination of two things — laziness (often in the form of procrastination) and fear. It usually masks itself behind perfectionism — oh, I can’t get anything done in just five minutes, when there’s time I’ll do the thing properly; oh, I just know the words won’t come out right, I’m not ready to write them yet, when I’m ready they’ll come; I’m not feeling inspired right now…

And sometimes people will just flat out tell you they’re “blocked.” They can’t write a word. They talk like it’s some mystical thing, that the well’s dried up and they just have to wait for the juices to flow again, whenever that’ll happen.

In my opinion, that’s horseshit. There hasn’t been a moment since I learned to write words that I haven’t been capable of doing so — and that’s not to brag, I don’t think it’s different from anyone else. Unless you have literally lost your ability to form a coherent sentence, you are without excuse. If you can talk, you can write. And if you can write a tweet, email, or message board post, you can write a poem, novel, or screenplay.

Or, in my case, a blog.

I may have more to say about my feelings on writer’s block (writing that intro has gotten those fabled juices flowing, those gears turning, those metaphors mixing) but I’m really just getting at the fact that I totally know I’m a shitbird for posting so rarely and I have no excuse.

I mean, when in my waking hours am I without arm’s reach of an internet-enabled Apple product entirely capable of posting to this site? Never, that’s when.

Yet I so rarely post. So rarely set aside the time to set down even a short post — reassuring myself that it’s because I want each post to have some meat to it, to make sure I can devote enough time to really make it worthwhile.

And so, supposedly demanding perfection, I give you tumbleweeds.


Bah, I say!

I’ll tell you something else I don’t believe in. New Year’s Resolutions. But this past year, I did join a gym (last November actually, but), and unlike most resolution-makers, I have been going on a near-daily basis. My nutrition’s been for shit, so I’ve been running in place literally and figuratively, but I made a change and I’ve stuck with it.

It’s all about developing a routine.

I write every day. Be it a tweet or a script, I’m writing. There’s no reason the blog shouldn’t be part of that, so from now on it will.

From → updates

  1. Ha! I came in here procrastinating tackling a subject I’ve been wanting to write about in recent weeks and stepped on this rake-to-the-face of a post.

    *Buries self in WriteRoom*

  2. Carl permalink

    I find writers block is more of an issue when developing story and plot. I was recently revising a script, and was focusing on one scene that I knew wasn’t working. And I was stumped on how to fix it. I would come up with ideas, but none of their stakes were high enough. I went through the scene over and over and over. What happened before. What happened after. Eventually I cracked it, and one I knew what I had to write, it was fine. But figuring out what to write was the hard part.

    • dorkmanscott permalink

      Ah, now this is a fair point. Certainly it’s possible to run into a wall and not know what to do next on a given project — in that sense, I not only believe in writer’s block, but that it’s inevitable.

      I more meant the kind of “writer’s block” that people use as an excuse for why they aren’t writing ANYTHING, as though they’re magically incapacitated. But that is a distinction worth making.

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