Until the last couple of weeks, I had never experienced writer’s block. Don’t get me wrong, I had moments where the words did not come out the way I wanted them to come out. I had times where they even came out a little slower than I would have liked. But the writer’s block that everyone speaks about, I had never experienced.
And I’m here to tell you, it sucks. “It sucks up one side and down the other. It’s uncomfortable. It’s weird and I hate every single second of it.” (Bonus points if you can name where the previous quote came from. :D)
If you’ve been following along with my journey, you already know I had a realization a couple of months ago about my writing. Namely, that over 10 years of writing news apparently sucked all the creativity out of the pathway from my brain to my fingertips. I say the pathway because I still think creatively. All of the time. Driving. Walking down the street. In the shower. Sitting on my recliner. Right before I go to sleep. (That last one I hate.)
There are always little scenes, random conversations, descriptive paragraphs rattling around in my brain. Sometimes I get them written down. Sometimes I don’t. But I am secure in the fact they are always there. Fantasy. Sci-Fi. Romance. Apocalyptic. Horror. (Again, not appreciated at bedtime). The imaginary voices and people in my head have no genre boundaries and are rarely quiet.
Until about two weeks ago, that is. When they did go silent and stayed that way. They were just gone. I’d sit down to write and there would be nothing. I tried freewriting because I always get something out of that. Nothing. I rewrote a chapter of a previously started novel in first-person hoping that would kickstart something. It turned out okay but still….nothing. It wasn’t just the writing in my head stopped. I couldn’t envision what I was writing anymore. They were just words on a page. It’s really hard to describe something when you can’t visualize it happening.
I realize my non-writing readers will look at the above and wonder if I might be a little crazy. (For the record, I probably am.) But I am fairly certain my fellow writers will understand.
Not going to lie; it was scary. I seriously started wondering if this was it. If my author career was going to grind to a halt before I even got started. Whether or not I had what it takes. Whether or not the lack of stories was my new normal. And it was sooo quiet in my head. Like, crickets quiet. And I didn’t like it. Not one bit. To say I was panicking a little would be a gross understatement.
Then yesterday a little leaf floated down in front of me, did a pirouette and landed on my truck. And I wrote about it. Last night, the voices kicked into high gear again. The chapter I’d been starting and erasing, starting and erasing for weeks suddenly came to life. I heard the characters speaking to each other in my head. Watched as they walked and talked. Saw the looks on their faces. That chapter was the first thing I thought about when I woke up and my brain continued to plot on and off throughout the day.
It felt so good to be back to my version of normal. I can’t say that I’m thankful that I have officially experienced writer’s block. I’d prefer never experience that again. Ever.
Ever, ever, ever.
But, if I do, I guess it’s good to know I will eventually come out of it.
Just so we’re clear, I would be totally cool with “not” though.