Free Psychotherapy Thursday: Conquering Writer’s Block

Posted: September 23, 2010 in FREE PSYCHOTHERAPY THURSDAY, Wednesday's Writing Tip

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To order a Duffy book, click on one of the covers to the left.

People talk about writer’s block like it is some sort of immutable force that can’t be stopped.

In reality writer’s block is simple irrational thoughts and the usual human excuses made valid by the collective consciousness.

When you’re not writing this is what is going on in your head:

“I don’t know what to write next so i should take time off until I know exactly what will perfectly fit.”

“If I write something and it’s not up to par that would be awful.”

“It’s too hard to write today because…(I’m tired, constipated, worried, etc) fill in the excuse.”

“I’m not writing because I suck and I don’t write as well as (fill in name here)”

“I’m not writing because this will never get published or agented and it’s a waste of time and will never be on the endcap at B and Noble.”

“I really should get after those dust bunnies under the curio and write tomorrow.”

At a conference panel I heard someone ask Marcus Sakey how he writes so much. He said, “Ass on chair, fingers on keyboard.”

He’s right.

Here’s some questions to challenge yourself when you think you’re blocked:

Am I blocked or simply uncomfortable about writing right now?

Where’s it written that I must always feel comfortable?

If I wrote and hated it why would that be so bad?

Do I a want guarantee of success?

Must everything i write be perfect the first time?

Am I avoiding writing because it’s work and I’d simply rather not work right now?

Am I wallowing in the fact that others write better than I do?

Carpenters don’t feel like building things everyday, plumbers don’t like working on drains and librarians get sick of shelving books. Accountants don’t like adding things up and cops get tired of arresting criminals.

It’s work. It’s not fun and it takes leaving your comfort zone.

  1. D. B. Dean says:

    My excuse is – I ‘m not writing because I will finish the book and then have to send it out and get rejected and fail. Right now its a dream that might come true. If I finish it then it ends.

  2. tjs9261 says:

    That’s how you. me and Michael Connolley feel every time we sit down…Keep your guard up and climb through the ropes…

    • D. B. Dean says:

      Sooo on monday 9/27th – my first piece will be published on an online ezine – no pay or anything… …i am pretty excited and yet feel like throwing up.

      note: technically its my second piece – my first debuting on your blog a few weeks ago. Oddly I sat down in a job interview last week and was asked “Are you amed after the writer Davida Dean, maybe related to?”

      I stopped for a moment and said – I believe I am the writer Davida Dean. Turns out the person holding the interview had googled my name and come across YOUR blog. Read my story posted here.

  3. ginny says:

    oooooooooh – you, me and Michael Connely! Can I get added to that list?! Could you add Pat Conroy too?!

  4. tjs9261 says:


    I love it– “Are you the writer DD? FF’in A right I am!” Should be the response…

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