Monthly Archives: January 2014

Regarding Writers’ Block

It’s been my experience that writers suffering from a block are dealing with one of two things – Either they are going in the wrong direction with their work, or a particular stress (family, work, illness etc) prevents them from mentally making room for their writing.

Of course if that were true wouldn’t other artists experience the same thing? I’ve never heard painters, photographers or choreographers go on about being stuck the way writers do. What is it about writing in particular…

If you’ve found yourself blocked the following articles have some useful tips for getting back on track.

Types of Writers Blocks and how to overcome them

7 ways to overcome writers’ block. Check out look at number 7 on this list. I’m totally trying it.

13 famous writers on overcoming writers block

Or perhaps you just need to make time for feeding yourself as Ray Bradbury suggests. “If you stuff yourself full of poems, essays, plays, stories, novels, films, comic strips, magazines and music, you will automatically explode every morning like Old Faithful. I have never had a dry period in my life because I feed myself well.” – Ray Bradbury

What are your tips for overcoming writers’ block?

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Contest Reminder!

Don’t forget! The Friends of Merril Short Story Contest closes February 15th. First price is $500! They will also award two honourable mentions with $50 each.

Yes, there is an entry fee but it is only $5. You can also enter more than once if you include a separate entry fee for each submission. For full submission guidelines click here.

I’m entering and you should, too!

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Dee Tales: Mailboxes

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Dee Tales are whimsical stories inspired by photographs taken with my i-phone. A tiny story for you, a wee sense of accomplishment for me. Enjoy.

The regular mailbox is at the front of the house. That’s the one with all the bills and junk mail. These boxes are different.

There’s one for good news, one for bad, and one for thank yous. The largest box is for advice. As you can imagine, it’s always full. The very smallest of boxes is for love.

I complain to my mother that nothing is ever in it. She said you can’t receive what you don’t send. I point out that I never send advice and but that box is always full. She just smiles and shakes her head.

It takes me a few days, but eventually I relent. I hope we have enough stamps.

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30 Day Challenge

By the end of 2013 I was sick of my novel. I was sick of struggling with the same problems and I was sick of my characters. In order to get into a better head space, I decided to put the book aside and come up with one idea for a novel every day for 30 days. No idea was too awful or ridiculous, just so long as there were 30.

What I learned:
– Spending my subway commute writing is better for the soul than reading the celebrity section in the local free paper (…I guess I already knew that…)
– It was hard to get started, but not hard to continue.
– I derived immense satisfaction from hitting small markers such as being 1/3 and 2/3 of the way done.
– The excitement and anticipation about being close to the end made me absolutely giddy.
– Out of 30 ideas 10 were usable which I think is awesome.
– I noticed similar themes when I compared all of the ideas.
– Some of the ideas that won’t work for novels will work for short stories.

I’m not anxious to get back to my novel, but I do feel more prepared to tackle it.

What 30 day challenge will you take on this year? 30 first lines? 30 titles? 30 pages?

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