I don’t think I suffer from ‘writer’s block’ as it’s traditionally known. A lot of people think of ‘writer’s block’ and think of a writer sitting at a blank screen, either not knowing what to write or how to word what they want to write. As far as I know, I suffer very little from the latter and virtually not from the former. I guess I have my imagination to thank for that – if I’m writing a story, not only do I know what I want to write, but I’ve seen most, if not all, of the story play out in my mind.
That being said, every time I write a story, I always yearn for that feeling of being in ‘the zone’ – that point where you’re writing an absurd amount of words per minute, where everything is perfectly clear, and you’re sometimes getting all these new ideas because you can think, feel and breathe the same way as the characters you’re writing. That feeling is exhilarating to me, and it’s the main thing I look forward to while writing.
Like a drug, it’s kind of taken over my writing process, and now, whenever I write stories, I hope for that feeling to return. I won’t say which stories have gotten me in the zone and which haven’t, in case it breeds bias, but let’s just say I’m not surprised the stories where I’ve been in the zone while writing them have become my most popular works.
Given this, I’ve found myself in the weird position where I feel as though any writing I do while not in the zone is subpar or that I’m writing it wrong, and that I’m walking through the fog waiting to be able to see the path ahead and start writing more effortlessly. Instead of effortlessly writing with no need for pause or anything like that, I write a couple sentences at a time, stare at them for a while, or maybe even rewrite a sentence or two. It’s a far cry from my mode while I’m in the zone. While in the zone, I can write a page in the time it takes me to write a paragraph when I’m not.
As a result, anytime I’m not in the zone feels like a limp. Like I’m not operating at full capacity. Every time I sit down and write it starts like this, and it doesn’t always mature into me getting into the zone. I sometimes have anxiety spikes when writing specifically thinking of, “What if I don’t get into the zone? Is this story bad, should I take the hint? Am I doing something wrong?”
It’s kind of annoying that my default writing mode now feels like some kind of disadvantage or disability. Whenever I write, I want to be in the zone, and thinking about it brings me further from it – when I’m in the zone, all I’m thinking about is my writing. As a result, everything leading up to it is my Writer’s Limp, which is in most cases better than a writer’s block, but being aware of it kind of sucks in its own right. It’s why some months are more efficient than others, and a big part of why I’m so unpredictable as to when I release my next piece.
The next piece should be out relatively soon. All the pieces are falling together, and I’m hopeful that readers will like the directions I take this story, though like with most of my multi-chapter pieces, it can be a bit of a slow burn at times (my polite way of saying a slog). Hopefully it’s enjoyed. I’ll talk to you all next week.