A troubling and painful period of Writer’s Block has made me realise how important it is for writers to learn how to heal themselves from emotional pain…and to repeat this process again and again.
This latest episode of Writer’s Block has been distressing and has led to me falling behind with my second draft. In recent weeks I have come so close to walking away from my beloved second draft. Every time I sat down to write nothing happened or if it did things would end quickly in tears. Frustrating and soul-destroying.
However something deep inside stopped me from ditching my story. I knew I had to find a way of healing my creative self or I would be stuck in this tortuous state for the rest of eternity.
Our writing lives are at times joyful and heavenly, but they are also fraught with creative emotional pain and suffering. We go through continual phases of hating our writing, dealing with writer jealousy, working through rejection, failure and feeling a million years away from our writing dreams. The important thing to remember is that all this emotional pain unfortunately goes with the territory of being a writer. It’s all part of the fun.
I am starting to see that literary success comes from learning how to heal yourself after an episode of creative emotional pain. In view of the time I have wasted fretting about my Writer’s Block – the quicker the healing process the better!
If we don’t do something to kickstart the healing process our projects won’t evolve and our dreams will never get fulfilled.
Here are the things I have found useful in healing myself from creative emotional pain:
- Talking. Sharing my struggle with some sympathetic writer friends has been invaluable. They helped me get to the root cause of the Writer’s Block (an emotional issue) and work out some coping strategies.
- Helping Others. I might be creatively blocked but that has not stopped me reading and reviewing other writer’s books. Acts of creative kindness are good for the soul.
- Creative Podcasts. There are some excellent writing related podcasts out there. Listening to other writers talk about how they handled Writer’s Block has been like a mini therapy session for me. I have a post on Useful Podcasts for Writers – click here.
- Refilling the creative well. Emotional pain drains the creative well so its important to work on refilling it. This can be done through things like catching up with writer friends, reading different genres, watching different films, shopping, eating out and writing some flash fiction.
- Returning to my creative ‘home’. I believe that everyone has a creative home. A creative place where you feel most at ease and comfortable as a writer. When you are troubled, returning to this place can be similar to that wonderful ‘coming home’ feeling you get after a long trip. Mine is writing comedy blog series like The Diary of Roxy Collins and Tina’s Writer’s Diary. I enjoy writing these and I love how the characters cheer me up. So whilst being ‘blocked’ with my novel I have been giving some serious thought to a new blog comedy series. I have a fab idea, some new great new characters and it has made me feel like a writer again. So, I have made a promise to myself that once I finish my second draft my reward will be to run my new blog series.
The hardest thing about being a writer is that when you fall down nobody comes rushing over to pick you up, dust you down, ruffle your hair and put a plaster over your emotional wound. You have to learn to do all this yourself.
I think I am coming out the other side as tonight (Sunday) I have written 1000 words.
Have you had to find ways to heal your creative self?
Have a fabulous day!