Writers Block: Is It Ever Useful Or Necessary?

SPOILER ALERT: Writers block is a useful and necessary process which lets you know you are about the make a breakthrough.

Writer's Block

When I don’t write, it sets off an uneasiness in my belly.

Procrastinating ranges from reaching into the fridge for a snack which I don’t need, to watching a short motivational videos, to working on something else completely. Eventually I get sick of how horrible procrastination feels and face the writers block head on.

Every time I get stuck, it inspires a break or a new technique.  Let me give you an example.  

I’d been wanting to write about a particular memory but it was a brief moment lasting less than a minute. I didn’t know how to start writing about it because it was such a short thing to describe.  After a week of procrastinating, eventually I sat with the block and just started to describe the room I’d been in when it happened. This led onto writing about the view from the window and how peaceful the house felt. This turned out to be useful information.

I usually find scene setting quite boring and irrelevant to read in novels and memoirs. I tend to think the writer is just showing off or trying to get their quota of words up. I usually skim read it until I get to the what I consider to be the relevant bits. So it’s not a style of writing I would naturally do myself. Hence it created a block in me.

Now I know that trying to avoid writing is a sign that I’ve hit some kind of block which just means I’m about to break through into a new kind of writing technique. Or I’ve touched some buried emotion which I need to let go of.

Anyone who finishes writing a book has achieved a great deal. It’s just you and the page and your ability to focus. We need to be aware of all the tricks we use to avoid facing into the challenges, otherwise they’ll get the better of us. Writing requires a willingness to face into what I’m trying to avoid. I don’t have to figure it out. I just have to be willing to show up and hang around with the writers block for inspiration.

My debut memoir, My Beautiful Psychosis, was published by Aeon Books and is now available as an AUDIOBOOK.


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