the writer’s slump

My inspiration is dead. Deader than a doornail. Even figuring out how to begin this post is like pulling teeth.

The point is, I can't write. And whenever I do, it's extremely forced. And for me, this is almost a full-blown crisis. I can't write?! But I'm a writer! That's what writers do!

So, I'm in a slump. If I'm being honest, I hate writing right now. I can't live without it, but right now I just can't do it. It's the weirdest paradox ever.

I even feel lame about complaining here, because I've been in this place so many times and in so many other blog posts. You guys get to hear all about it whenever I'm blocked in my writing. Today is no exception, and you have my utmost apologies for my complaints.

I honestly think my lack of inspiration is due to a lack of faith in my abilities as a writer. I've been feeling the blues today when it comes to my writing, which is probably my fault since I was reading tons of writing blogs today. Whenever I read advice from other authors, it makes me realize how little I know about writing and how much I still have to learn (and fix). And then the doubts set in. Common doubts are, But everyone is better than me. I'll never get published. My novels have so many flaws.

And on and on and on.

Are you in this place too? If you are, I desperately wish I had something earth-shattering I could say to you. I don't. But perhaps we could commiserate together?

Come in, have a seat, sit down. Over there by a door is a stack of swords. Pick one up. Let's hunt some orc!


(Pardon me. Aragorn has once again barged his way onto my blog. I did, of course, mean to say inspiration. Not orc. Carry on.)


22 comments:

  1. I know EXACTLY how you feel...actually, I was just in that state yesterday. Here are some hints of what helps me when I'm in that state:

    - Try planning some more plot for your story. This is good for me because I have a beginning and end for my book, but not a middle.
    - I love doing this second idea. I take a song I really like and try getting some plot ideas from each line of the song (I could send you some examples of how I do that if you email me at alyiannabaggins@gmail.com).

    Good luck and feel free to email me whenever you're in this state! :D

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    1. Aw, thank you for the tips, Alyianna! I've taken you up on your offer, so there should be a new shiny email sitting in your inbox right now. :D

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  2. At the moment, I'd rather hunt orc then inspiration. :P

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    1. Me too. Let's do it. Maybe we'll manage to skewer both. How does an Orc-Inspiration kabob sound?

      ...Yeah. It sounds weird to me too.

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  3. I feel this way quite often, and when it happens, I take it as my soul's way of saying, "Take a break and go live!". I'll forget about writing, I'll focus on some other hobby, I'll play games with siblings, rearrange my room, all the stuff I never had time to do before, because I was writing.

    Take a break, its no biggie.

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    1. Your tip was so helpful, Ashley. I'd already been thinking about taking a break, but I didn't want to. Once I finally let that go, though, I decided I need to set my writing aside for a while, and like you said, take a break and live. It's very freeing. Thank you ever so much for your comment!

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  4. Awww. I am in the exact same position as you -- have been for a while, actually, so I know how horribly disheartening it is. I'm afraid I can't offer you any useful advice, but at least we can (as you said) commiserate together. It's better than nothing at all!

    (Aragorn is always inspirational, though. ;P)

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    1. Awww! I'm glad I'm not alone! *hugs* It's difficult, isn't it? Let's do commiserate.

      On the rare chance that you see this response comment, would you like to rant about your writer's block? :P How long has it been going on? Are you taking a break, or still trying to write here and there? I'm taking a break, and it's been immensely helpful. I can already feel my inspiration starting to return. That's what I'd suggest if you're still feeling blocked; it's helped me out a lot.

      And yes, Aragorn is always inspirational, even in shades. Always. I'd like to give a hearty thank you to Tolkien and Peter Jackson for giving us Aragorn. :P

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  5. It happens to everyone. Ispiration comes and it goes, and just remember, if this is your first draft, of course there'll be holes. No one's first draft is perfect unless they're 100% talent, and I think that might be one person in a century.

    As I always say to my sister when she's stuck, "It'll come."

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    1. Exactly. I've been trying to remind myself of that constantly; no writer is born perfect. It's just hard not to compare my poor manuscript to those of published authors, such as Tolkien and Lewis. But comparing my first draft to that of an edited work is probably not the best idea. :P

      You are so right; it will come. I firmly believe that it will. In fact, it's sort of kind of already starting to return. Thank you for the reminder, dear. :)

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  6. I love the way you write Sky, which is why I decided to follow your blog. Maybe you could take up some small writing exercises which may inspire you to write.

    Re: Alyianna, I really liked your idea about getting plot ideas from a favourite song. I think I might use that idea one day if I ever teach English.

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    1. Aww, thank you for the follow, Carlyn! *hugs* I'm so glad to have you here. Your comment was seriously very encouraging, especially because I was doubting whether to leave this post up at all. Thank you!

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  7. Writer's block sucks. Music helps, though, sometimes. Ironically the LOTR soundtrack is my best block-slaying soundtrack ... and piccies of Aragorn are never resented. Why is he so damn gorgeous? *drools*

    Anyway ... a little rest could work too, or just a change of scenery in terms of what you're writing. Not as much fun as orc hunting, but they work. Ish. :P

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    1. Thank you for the advice, Charley! You're one of my most faithful commenters, have I ever told you that? I love hearing from you.

      Love the LOTR soundtrack. I love most any soundtrack, actually. It's one of the little-known things about me; I adore instrumental music.

      A change of scenery would be good, both in terms of where I'm writing and what I'm writing. Think my inspiration might return if I went on a cruise or moved to Hawaii? Where's the TARDIS when you need it? :P

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    2. Aww, thank you! I'm glad you pleasure at seeing me here amounts of the grins I get reading your delightful bloggeh :)

      Same! Heard of "Two Steps from Hell"? They to awesome orchestral pieces ... they're close runners up in my favourite inspiration-slaying tunes :)

      I have a TARDIS! Nicked it from The Doctor ... he doesn't like me very much right now *cackles*

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    3. Aw, thanks. :D

      Yep, I've heard of them. Never listened to their music, though... yet. I shall have to try that!

      Ooh, you have a TARDIS?! Mind if I take it for a spin?! *cheesy grin*

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  8. Great post--I can totally relate--and that picture is to die for =D

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    1. Thank you! I'm glad you can relate; it's always good to know that you're not alone.

      Isn't it?! One of my favorite pictures of all time. :P Never fails to make me laugh at the very least. I think I'm in love. ;)

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  9. Best thing I've found is to have fun. Sit down with a friend and make up a dialogue, perhaps each pretending to be a favorite character. These things are great, and more often than not they bring up some good ideas. Also, if you're straining for ideas and can't write any of the ones you find, leave it alone. The most productive time I had for ideas was just after NaNoWriMo, when I never touched a computer until I was finished with the Count of Monte Cristo.
    By the way, I really like your blog title. That's my absolute favorite chapter and book of the Chronicles of Narnia.
    Milady, a band of orcs runs before us! *puts an arrow on the string and shoots* Ow! Stupid arrow! *attempts to pull it out of his foot*
    Oh, and self-inflicted pain aside, could you open commenting for the Name/URL option? Helps a lot for us WordPress users. Thanks! Now, anyone got any anesthetic?

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    1. Those are some great suggestions, thank you. I'm actually taking a break right now from any and all writing, which is extremely refreshing. I need a little break to let my inspiration return.

      Thank you! It's my absolute favorite chapter and book, too!

      I see them, sir! *laughs* Here, I've got some anesthetic. I keep tons of it around whenever I'm going on an orc hunt. Now! To kill the rest of those vermin orc... Oh... it appears I've forgotten my sword (despite the fact that I left a stack of them by the door. I'd forget my own head sometimes if it wasn't attached). Anyone have a spare?

      Ah, of course. I'll open up the Name/URL option right away. I wondered if that would be an issue. My apologies for the inconvenience. :)

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  10. Hmm. Inspiration and orc. Could it really be the same thing, I wonder? :) :) Hope you found it, whichever one you decided to hunt for. :)

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    1. Ha! Yes, maybe it's a conspiracy and inspiration is hiding from us writers by masquerading around as orcs.

      ...Then again, I certainly hope not. XD Orcs are nasty things, and I like to think that inspiration is quite lovely, although extremely evasive.

      That said, I did find my inspiration! I've been outlining since yesterday and it. is. glorious. I love it when my inspiration comes upon me in spades like this -- though moments like these are rare. Most of the time I feel as if I'm dry as the desert. So I guess I'll hold onto these moments of inspiration and prolong it as long as I can!

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