Life as a Writer’s Block

Dear Reader,

Sometimes, we need a break.

After I graduated with my masters in 2010, I was dead-set on having my second book published within the year, which I did.

It took me seven years to write Haunting Miss Trentwood (because I was a full-time student and a part-time writer). I put my hand and head to marketing, and did so for a year… so much time spent interacting on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, etc, meant I wasn’t reading or writing anymore. Just talking about things that I had read and written before Haunting Miss Trentwood was published.

It was draining. Exhausting. It made me despise writing, the thinking and doing of it.

I have felt so guilty lately for not wanting to touch The Rebel’s Touch. I keep printing drafts hoping I will feel that old familiar rush that motivated me to put the Red Pen of Doom to paper. Nothing doing. Instead, I find myself staring out the window, wishing my head didn’t hurt. Or hoping a certain someone calls so we can hang out. Or looking up new recipes because I don’t want to be sitting, I want to be moving around and making something new. Or throwing my dance shoes into my bag because I have a performance or a lesson to teach or a party to enjoy.

Fact is, I have a very particular sort of Writer’s Block: life.

I never had a life before. It’s amazing! In high school, college, and even graduate school, my schedule consisted of…

  • School,
  • Homework, and then,
  • Because I wasn’t allowed to hang out with anyone after dark (in high school anyway which set my pattern for undergrad and grad school), I would read or write or paint or sew.

I love those years, they made me prepared and capable to handle the little fixes around the house.

But the truth of the matter is I have no idea how to balance a full life and my writing.

The first three months of 2012, I tormented myself by thinking I wasn’t being true to my craft. I didn’t want to admit that my “craft,” as it were, was switching. I’m a swing, lindy hop, and balboa dancer. I won’t have this “young” almost-27-year-old body forever. This is my opportunity to make the best of my youth and dance while I can. Writing… well, I hope with all my soul that I will always have my mind available to write one more story.

I’ve also begun exploring religion, something that has always been a part of my life, but never explicitly. I just have so much I’m trying to figure out right now… My psyche is in flux, making it difficult to write about characters whose lives are also in flux. Without knowing myself and what I want to write about, it is almost impossible for me to give my characters minds and thoughts and worries of their own.

Do you have any suggestions for me, to help me balance life and writing?

Anyway, that is my explanation for my radio silence.

All the best,

Belinda

2 thoughts on “Life as a Writer’s Block

  1. Maybe this is a time for you to do exactly what you're doing. Experience life so you can write more completely later. My suggestion would be to keep a journal so you stay in the habit, and that you can refer back to later. Good luck!

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    1. Thanks Jessica! I've been trying to stop worrying about it. As long as I'm writing when I feel like it, and most importantly, not putting pressure on myself, the words don't feel like they're locked away somewhere. I do carry a journal in my work bag now so if I get struck with something during a slow moment, I can write. So that helps!

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