- Books, Literature, and Writing
On Writers Block As a Pisces
Writing Needs To Be Done..
It does not matter whether or not there is a pressing assignment due. It does not matter whether or not you have a subject in mind. Writer's block just happens. It happens to all of us from time to time.
Many things can cause this annoying stopppage of our chosen craft. Sometimes we can't even put our finger on the cause ourselves. It can be stress over some unrelated problem trying to work itself out in our brains, and taking over completely, leaving the writing-self a quivering mess of cerebral goo.
Over-thinking can be a culprit as well. I imagine this has happened to more than a few authors from time to time. I know it is one of my major bugaboos. You sit down to write, and the piece forms itself in your mind almost by magic, and you start to think about how to flesh it out, mentally jotting down all the points you want to cover, and think you are good to go.
But sit yourself down at the keyboard, and it evaporates. It's all gone. Poof! Like smoke on the wind, you cannot re-capture a single word. Belatedly you realize you should have sat right down and started typing as soon as the idea came to you, letting the ideas flow as your fingers flew across the keys. But, like a dummy, you sat there thinking, tyring to will it into becoming your lifelong masterwork, and all for naught.
But, yet, you must write. You are A Writer. If you don't write, today, you'll vouch murder upon your very soul. Unfortunately, the more you struggle, the emptier your mind becomes. You sit staring blankly at the screen which starts to look like a tall building about to topple on you if you don't fulfill its demands for input.
You don't care. There is nothing you can do. The keys sit idle under your limp fingers and refuse to inspire you.
The Birth Chart Connection
I'm a Pisces. That's those two silly fish swimming in opposite directions at the same time. It describes me to a " T ." The fish represent the two sides of our nature. I'm not saying astrology is infallible, and many say its just plain rubbish. Nonetheless, I have noticed this about myself since long before I even knew there was such a thing as astrology.
I fight with myself. I argue with myself. I second-guess myself. Sometimes I doubt myself. It seems as if the more I need or want to do something, the worse this problem becomes, until I talk or think myself into paralysis and nothing gets done at all.
As I manage to write this very piece, I realize it is but a piece of therapy, as I try to write something, anything, to get the creative juices flowing again.
"What shall I write today?" I asked my brain this morning. The conversation went like this:
My brain: "Well, let's see--you could write about politics."
Me: "No! I hate politics!"
Brain: "OK, well, how about game strategy? You like to play games."
Me: "I've already written 2 articles on games, and you can't very well write a strategy guide about a game you haven't beaten!"
Brain: "I've got it! Write about something new."
Me: "Gee--now there's a helpful bit of advice! Could you be more specific?
Brain: "Um, no. That will be up to you."
Me: "Great. Forget it."
Brain: "Just start writing. Write any old thing."
Me: "Sure. Thanks for nothing."
So Here I Sit All Broken-Hearted,...
...tried to write and only brain-farted.
I feel like "The Count" character in an old episode of the children's TV show, "Sesame Street" that aired when my kids were young.
The Count was depressed because he had run out of things to count. Various people suggested things he could count, but he'd already counted them all. Another helpful soul suggested he could simply just count.
"Just count?!" He was incredulous. "Just count, without having something to count?!"
"Why, that would be like a forest with no trees; that's one thing it would be like; it would be like peanut butter without jelly, that's two things it would be like; it would be like salt without pepper, that's three things it would be like..." and so on--and he was off--happily counting something.
And It's a Start
And so I bring this bit of nonsense to a close. I've shared with you something that sometimes works for me. Just start writing. Write anything. Write down a list of how many colors of T-shirts you have; write a grocery list; write an imaginary conversation between your pets.
Write mad angry letter to a politician or company president. Just write it just to get whatever it is off your chest--if you never mail it, that's ok...it's probably not the letter you should send.
None of these 'therapy writings' need to be considered for publication. You can toss them in the trash or burn them in the fireplace if it suits you.In fact, if I have a complaint letter to write, I often begin exactly there--writing an angry, name-calling explosion of temper, telling them what-for. It is not intended for anything more than to calm me down and focus my thoughts and the points I wish to make. Once that is out of the way, I have settled down enough to compose a properly diplomatic letter of complaint.
The main thing is with any of these seemingly useless bits of "stuff" is that it gets you writing again, and in the process of writing nonsense, a little gem or spark may sneak in that indeed becomes the key to unlock your masterpiece, as I've written in a more thorough and serious article on the subject.
Happy writing, one and all.
© 2011 Liz Elias