To write, or not to write? That is, well and truly, the question. Is writer’s block actually a thing? Or do us wannabe writers use it as an excuse for why we haven’t written more than four chapters of a book yet?
I always say ‘I have writer’s block’, but most of the time what’s really happening inside my head is that there’s all these ideas for stories – spanning across multiple genres, and all targeted at different audiences – and I simply can’t choose which to write first. The minute I start writing one, I decide ‘nah, let me switch to this other idea instead’. So, I write a few pages of that other idea and then decide ‘nah, let me switch again’, and the cycle repeats. Another issue I have when writing is that I criticise my work too much and think ‘does this sound like best-selling work?’ And then have to shout at myself ‘this is just the first draft, you idiot! It’s meant to be trash!’
What are some of your main writing woes? I think my biggest struggle when writing is coming up with conflict. And… well… you can’t really have a story without conflict, can you? Perhaps you could, but it’d be a bit boring. I could, of course, just follow the basic format of having a hero who has to defeat a ‘dark lord’ (ie/ Voldermort, Sauron, Darth Vader, etc) but I really do want to try and be a tad bit more creative, you know? I’ve always loved the idea of the conflict being within the hero themself – make them more of an anti-hero or perhaps have their mind slowly spiral into insanity a la The Shining. But I do feel I lack the brain power for such conflict at the moment.
I truly believe that you can’t write what you don’t read. And by that I mean that one couldn’t write a sci-fi if they didn’t read any sci-fi. You have to read and come to understand the genre, audience and general feel of a particular segment of fiction. I’ve taken to reading more horror recently (psychological) as I would love to one day write in that genre but I definitely haven’t read enough of them yet to feel comfortable writing one. What’s a genre you would love to write for?
This post has just been a little insight into my daily struggles as an aspiring writer. I hope to track my writing journey on here and keep you, and myself, updated as I progress. In my next writing post, I plan to discuss the things that help me come up with ideas and focus on the actual writing itself.
Thank you for listening to the ramblings of a little lost writer!