Monday, October 13, 2008


Actually, I'm kinda past it, but in the last few weeks I've developed some strategies to deal with it.

1) Go for a walk. Now I'm not crazy about walking. My hip joints protest and I breathe like a steam whistle but according to all sorts of people who believe that they know more than I do, walking is supposed to be good for you. So go for a walk. When you get back you'll be too tired to write so it won't matter whether you have writer's block or not.

2) Take a nap. See number one. After your walk, you'll be tired so it's completely logical for you to then take a nap. Also, if you're sleeping it won't matter if you have writer's block. You'll be sleeping so you won't care.

3) Scrub the toilets. According to the people who really get all het up about housekeeping, this is supposed to be done every century or so. Since you're not doing more important things (like writing) you may as well get this job done for the next, oh, lifetime. Then you won't have to worry about it when you decide that writing is more fun.

4) Do the laundry. No one can explain to me why we have to wear clothing, but eh, if you occasionally dress there will eventually be a load of laundry. So on those odd days when you have nothing better to do (like writing) gather it all up and toddle off to the laundromat. While there you can watch Judge Judy or Oprah or Dr. Phil and that will be enough to depress you so much that you can go directly to number two when you get home, thus alleviating depression because you're sleeping.

5) Bake some cookies. Everybody knows that the primary cause of writer's block is malnourishment, mainly because of lack of chocolate and sugar. Chocolate chip cookies are excellent sources of chocolate and sugar. Actually Tim-Tams would be better but the Aussies tend to be a bit peckish about us taking their cookies so... chocolate chips are a good second choice.

6) Read a book. There are two schools of thought on what type of book to read. You could read a bad book--no not a naughty book--a bad book. A wall banger book. That kind that is sooooo bad that you stomp around belly achin' that you could do better. So go do so. ORRRRR, you read a wonderful book... the kind that inspires you so that you say, "I want to write a book like that!" And you do so.

7) Watch the grass grow. This will fill many, many hours. It also is sometimes boring, so boring that people go directly to number two. Or even better, they are forced to work on number five. However, if you persevere, you will eventually have to mow the lawn which is also a good form of excercise. Almost as good as number one.

8) Do the dishes. Now I'm of the personal opinion that doing dishes is a dead-end job. You never, ever finish. Never. Somewhere in the apartment or house, there is another dirty dish. Who came up with the bright idea of having dishes, anyway? If we still ate out of the communal pot all we would have to wash is our hands. What's up with all these pots, pans, dishes and silverware? Oh yeah. I have heard through the grapevine that some people think while they do dishes. I don't believe that--it's just a nasty rumor.

9) Call your mother. Or a reasonable substitute (great aunt, second cousin...) When she demands to know what is wrong (because of course you never call) immediately begin sobbing and confess that you're having a mad passionate affair with... the bagger at your grocery store. It won't help your writer's block, but after listening to your mother chew you out for two or three hours, you won't care. Likely, you'll go directly to number two or number five. That's okay, too.

10) Buy a gallon of double chocolate ice cream, cherries, whipped cream, and bananas. Oh yeah, don't forget the nuts. Invite your neighbor over for banana splits--even if you don't know the neighbor! After your gesture of good will, you'll be on a first name basis with the neighbor. If he's a hunky male, make sure that you inform him that it's his turn to provide the ice cream.

None of the above will help writer's block, but you won't care anymore.



  1. I always do something physical - go for a walk, mow the lawn, trim tree limbs - or I make myself sit and write and that works too

  2. Watch a movie. At some point I always find myself thinking what I might have done differently and one thing leads to another.

  3. hmmmmmm. dishes. laundry. what a concept. just thinking about it is enough to make a nap sound like a good idea!

  4. I love #9:) And then after you call, confess, and get lectured, write it down and continue the story!

  5. For some weird reason folding laundry helps me think. I know...break out the straightjackets. Maybe it's because it's such a mindless, repetitive activity. I like the ice cream solution best though.

  6. Oy, just thinking about taking a walk usually leads to taking a nap. Though sometimes I do nap with my WIP open on my lap top. Does that count as "hours at work?" Cause it should.

    Dakota Rebel

  7. I'm a veg out infront of an old familiar movie kinda ga. That usually helps. At some point, because I give myself permission not to worry about writing, I usually find it flittering in the back of my mind.

    Of course, I'm just coming off a two month writer's block so maybe my ways don't work so well afterall.