Writer's Block - Getting Past Fear

Writer's Block: According to Webster's Dictionary.
The problem of not being able to think of something to write about, or not being able to finish writing a story, poem, etc. A psychological inhibition preventing a writer from proceeding with a piece.

Yeah, I think writer's block is about fear. Plain and simple. The fear of failure - my work will not be good enough to: publish, win a contest, excite fans, or please my parents. Or it's a fear of success - what would happen if I became famous and everyone was reading my work? How would that change my life? (Many of you might be thinking that would be an awesome problem to have, but almost the same number of people are afraid of success as there are people afraid of failure.) Both fears stop you from writing - they are the cause of writer's block. 

How do you get around the fear?

1. Recognize that fear might be the thing that is preventing you from writing. Sometimes the process of identifying the cause can allow the breakthrough. "I'm afraid, and I don't want to be caught in fear, so I'm going to sit down right now and get to work."

2. If recognition isn't enough - sit with the fear. Recognize that fear is the problem, then determine where your fear comes from and allow yourself to release that fear. Today you do not have to be a best selling author, or show your parents your novel, or do anything else, but put words down on paper for yourself. Push that inner critic who is always striving for perfection away - far, far, far away. You don't need him today. 

3. Change from focusing on the fear to focusing on the love. Why do you write? Love of words? Love of story? Love of the time sitting in contemplation with your journal? Whatever excites you about your writing process, make that what you focus on. When you exchange love for fear your writing mind will automatically open and allow the process to begin. 

Good luck and happy writing!
D. Jean Quarles is a writer of Women's Fiction and co-author of a Young Adult Science Fiction Series. Her latest book, Solem was released February 2016.

D. Jean loves to tell stories of personal growth – where success has nothing to do with money or fame, but of living life to the fullest. She is also the author of the novels: Rocky's Mountains, Fire in the Hole, and Perception, and the co-author of The Exodus Series: The Water Planet: Book 1 and House of Glass: Book 2. The Mermaid, an award winning short story was published in the anthology, Tales from a Sweltering City.                                                                                             

She is a wife, mother, grandmother and business coach. In her free time . . . ha! ha! ha! Anyway, you can find more about D. Jean Quarles, her writing and her books at her website at www.djeanquarles.com                                      

You can also follower her on Facebook.


Karen Cioffi said...

Jean, great advice on overcoming writer's block. Fear is tricky. If you don't get control of it, it can spin out of control.

Unknown said...

Great post! I think writer's block happens to all authors and they have different ways of handling it. While it can be discouraging, there is no reason to give up. The advice you posted here will definitely help authors, especially new ones in overcoming writer's block. Here's something I wrote months back. Hope you'll find this useful as well: https://www.chatebooks.com/blog-how-to-overcome-writers-block

Linda Wilson said...

Great post, Jean. I like your idea of changing focus. I will remember that next time (anything bothers me, writer's block included). Your head shot is terrific.

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