Writer’s Block

I love the feeling of finally being over writer’s block. Writer’s block, as a creative person, leaves me feeling so crummy all the time. It’s repeatedly opening Word documents and closing them only to open another one. It’s wanting to say something but having nothing to say. I can write, but it’ll never be something substantial. It always ends up being something boring, something basic, something I’ve said before. But when I finally am out of it, it’s a clarity like no other. It’s like I was drowning and now I’ve learned to swim.

It’s a blessing and a curse, to be a creative person. It’s a blessing when I’m creating, I feel best when I’m creating, but when I’m doing anything else, it feels like wasted time. I know it’s not, and I’ll just get burnt out if I’m always creating, but I can’t always shake the feeling. It’s good to take a day off or take breaks. I tell myself this. But I’m also the person who will stop everything to write down an idea. I’ve pulled over while driving because I thought of an idea for a story. I feel like my brain is just always thinking about what to write next. As if it’s wired to create.

That’s what’s been on my mind today. I didn’t have any poems to post, so I figured I’d give you guys a look into what’s been going on in my head lately.

Also, I’ve been thinking of maybe writing a poetry book. I have a backlog of poems that admittedly need some work, but those plus some I’ve posted here, I think it’d be cool.

7 thoughts on “Writer’s Block”

  1. I can relate so entirely with this, such an awful feeling when there’s so much to say or write but no words come out. Writing a poetry book would be an awesome goal to reach, I would love to read it

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve thought about this post ever since you posted it. It reminded me how my Fiction professor had hand-outs for writers block.

    Could not find the link he gave us, but I have this:

    I’ll just list ways you can accomplish this [radical revision] when you are working on a poem. Dig up some old ones and see what happens (it’s best to use old ones to start, as you are no longer emotionally attached to them):

    1) If someone tells you you have too much in your poem, add more.

    2) If someone tells you you have too little in your poem, take out more.

    3) Take the last line and make it the first. Rewrite from there, keeping whatever works in what’s already there.

    4) Expand your poem: add subordinate clauses using who, when, until, if, while, before, after, as, since, whenever, where, etc.

    Also use coordinating conjunctions: and/and/and; or/or/or; but/but/but (think of it as a list that keeps going).
    So, for example: “The man, who once loved me, who once told me___________, and __________, and ____________, and ______________…” so you’re pushing the syntax and the comfort of the line/sentence.

    Actual listing – must make a qualitative progression (light to dark, big to small, for example); can’t be random. Push the list, see what you come up with.

    Repetition – repeat what you just said. Maybe repeat it again.
    Contradiction – say the opposite of what you just said.

    5) Compress your poem:

    Negation: use the word ‘not.’ When you do this you get both the thing named and its absence. You can also use other words that negate – ‘un’; ‘never’; ‘less’; ‘without.’

    Neologisms: (what I like to refer to as kennings – used in Anglo Saxon poetry): put words together to create a heightened adjective, a metaphor: ‘the shutmouth mother,’ ‘the sorrowfence.’

    Possessives: use possessives: ‘how the sun’s poultice draws on my inflammation’ (Plath) or ‘the wind’s rebuke’ and ‘the leaves’ exhalation’ (Brigit Pegeen Kelly).

    Shift the parts of speech: Use a noun as a verb or vice versa. Use an adjective as a verb, etc.
    Cut and paste: radically rearrange your poem. Find new combinations!

    EXERCISE:

    Go over your poem and underline any lines you feel jump out with lots of energy. Pick three of those lines. Make one the first line of a new poem, one a middle line, and one the last line. Now, using some of the above strategies (minimum 3), write a new poem.

    — Catherine Barnett, “Radical Revision”

    Free writing always works for me, I simply open up a Word doc and start ranting. I will also write dialogues with myself using three fictional charters based on my personality using different forsm of my name, such as Charles, Chuck, Charlie. You really have to embody the characters to make it work, but it’s also, really, a lot of fun to do.

    Liked by 3 people

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