Coping With Writer’s Clog

Posted: April 22, 2014 in Self-publishing
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Every writer has, at one point or another, dealt with writer’s block. Some have even dealt with writer’s bloc, defined by me, here, now, as writer’s block brought on by the disagreement among a group of co-authors on how to proceed with their work in progress. Sometimes, collaboration sucks. Exhibit A? Group projects in high school. And, horrifically, in college. To make a potentially long rant short, let’s just say I typically ended up doing 75% of the work to get an A or B and protect my GPA. Wait…Where was I?

Oh yeah, the unwitting familiar* of writer’s block (scary there is such a thing, isn’t it?), writer’s clog. As the moniker suggests, writer’s clog is caused by the introduction of so many compelling novel/novella/short-story/love-note ideas into one writer’s brain at one time that it results in a logjam that couldn’t be cleared by a million beavers typing a million requests for beaver reinforcements to a million beaver unions. In simpler terms, it’s paralyzing. In my particular case, it makes me stare at my computer monitor and drool for two hours on end. Then I go to work and drool some more. So there’s lots of drooling involved.

In all seriousness though, folks, writer’s clog and writer’s block form a kind of  WWE tag-team nightmare that clotheslines me and drops me to the mat, rendering me wordless most of the time. Lately, anyway. The stuff on my plate (in some particular order) includes the sequel to Signal Fire, minor reworks to a couple of mainstream contemporary novels I wrote a few years ago, a horror short that demands to be written ASAP, a thriller, a mashup of Moneyball, Major League, and Any Given Sunday, a techno-apoca-thriller, something that makes Leaving Las Vegas look like The Notebook, and, most recently, a beautiful mess that may end up as a novella that ripped off What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. Other than that, I got nothin’.

Historically, I’ve stolen Stephen King’s advice and written shorter works in between novels. Since I have three novels in progress right now (not my usual approach to this thing)…you can see my conundrum. So here’s my solution: Finish Something. Theoretically, that’ll get me back into my groove and everything will be all puppies and rainbows again. That aforementioned horror short shows no signs of leaving me alone, so I’m going to start it, then finish it. I’m hoping it gets me back on track.

*-On a completely unrelated note, speaking purely as a fan of music, Unwitting Familiars would be an awesome name for a band. Go for it. No charge.




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