Writer’s Block

Couldn’t sleep this morning. Looked at the clock. 3:30 a.m.

So I got up, thinking it was the perfect opportunity to work on my novel, with the kids asleep and the house dark and totally quiet.

It’s now 5:20 a.m., and I have about 12 words to show for my efforts.

Writer’s block is a curious thing, to stare at a screen and feel… well, at a loss for words. This time, I don’t think it’s fear that’s blocking me. I know what that feels like, and my solution has been just to write and write my way out of it. And that’s worked reasonably well. This time, however, I’m feeling a bit scattered. In doing a quick search on “writer’s block” for this blog post, I came across the following on Wikipedia: “A fictional example [of writer’s block] can be found in George Orwell’s novel Keep The Aspidistra Flying, in which the hero Gordon Comstock struggles in vain to complete an epic poem describing a day in London: ‘It was too big for him, that was the truth. It had never really progressed, it had simply fallen apart into a series of fragments.'”

I have a feeling that’s what’s going on with me. The novel is starting to feel like a series of fragments. Each time I open the document, I begin writing somewhere, which is good, but I’ve reached the point in the process where I have to start making sure the writing is making sense for what I’m trying to achieve. Is everything tying together? Do I truly understand these characters? Would he or she say that or do that? I have a solid beginning, and I know where I’m going, but do I know exactly how I’m going to get there?

For the next day or two, I’m going to put together a chapter-by-chapter synopsis of Baby Grand in an effort to try and fill in the holes in the plot. I think that will help me going forward and pray this isn’t just another creative exercise in procrastination.

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2 thoughts on “Writer’s Block

  1. If nothing else it gets everything fresh in your mind in chapter order. That way it will feel more like a “book” and less like a “series of chapters” as you may currently be seeing it. I’ve been there! If you’re feeling scattered, this is probably the best thing you can do to help get back on focus. Not a waste of time! Good luck!

  2. Yep, it totally makes sense. When I’m at the place you are, albeit in less lengthy endeavors, I find that editing on paper also helps me get a feel for the whole piece in a way that moving the cursor up and down doesn’t.

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