Writer's Block Ain't Real

w1Many writers, bless their souls, are tormented by the proverbial evil ‘writer’s block’ while others just laugh at the entire though of the concept. As a prolific online article writer I am in the latter category and think the idea of ‘writer’s block’ is just an excuse for the laziest writers amongst us. Maybe you are a writer and have your own thoughts on this, but since I’ve written more books and articles than you will in your life time, maybe you should read this article. Let’s talk.

Dr. Gary Goodman suggested to me that; “clearly writer’s block is not your problem! I say this because of your comments but also because you are so prolific,” still he does have his own thoughts on this, and yes, he too is a prolific writer with many books and articles to his credit, quite good in fact. He has 2 important thoughts on all this:

(1) Like clinical depression, there are sufferers and there are those that cannot believe sufferers can’t just snap out of it or read some Dale Carnegie and be instantly cured.

(2) Possibly, if you are writing for acceptance, praise, fame, inclusion, and I would say money, you may be more likely to experience writer’s block. Your writing becomes contingent on positive reinforcement. As with any habit, if the behavior isn’t positively reinforced, it is extinguished. When positive outcomes occur, you continue to write. This would suggest that those that write for the writing, itself, for intrinsic reasons, experience fewer if any blockages.”

Interestingly enough, there is actually some clinical psychology research on this topic and I can confirm this, as I have read research papers on this reality, so both of his points are good points indeed, and I guess my viewpoints come from my own experiences.

As an athlete, I see correlations to performance and excuses. In fact, I don’t see a lot of difference between writing, and athletics. You practice and you compete, if you make excuses you cannot win, and I believe losing sucks, but we need the losers otherwise there is nothing to gauge our successes by. So, I am happy for all those who claim writer’s block or have low-self-esteem, because they make us other writers look good, but I wonder sometimes why they allow themselves such self-defeatism. Maybe those who believe they can’t or have writer’s block should find a new profession – I’d rather compete against better writers because that will make me better.

Those who are really good at excuses and writer’s block can always work in Manufacturing – the Excuse Factory! Please consider all this and think on it.