Thursday, May 20, 2010

Writer’s Block—Shmock!

I’ve been away and not writing and would like to speak of writer’s block by saying:


There will be times when you don’t write and the reasons will be legion.  I’ve been reading John Steinbeck’s East of Eden, Richard Feynman’s The Meaning of it All and lots of the old and new testaments of The Bible.  I have transplanted hosta from the back to the front, trimmed the forsythia, planted a moonflower and a morning glory, advertised an electric portable three-wheeled scooter suitable of an elderly person on Craig’s List and put an old PC on Freecycle all while lamenting that I haven’t written a decent poem for months, maybe all year.  I’m not blocked.  I am busy.  I am not writing.

If you believe you are blocked then you haven’t learned to write or you’re out of practice as I am.  I return to my mantra:  If you’re going to write, then write and write a lot.  Unless you are brain dead you continue to gather what will become your writing.  Your mind never stops journaling.  I you are reading, thinking, observing anything new then your mind is expanding, lubricating itself and will deliver when it can.

Do not afford yourself the luxury of writer’s block.  There isn’t enough time.  Our art is based upon the fact that we’ll never get to the truth—that’s why we try—and there is therefore no time to waste in self-defeating lament.  As the song (Desert Pete by The Kingston Trio) says:  “Have faith my friend.  There’s water down below.”  I hasten to add that whether you know it or not, it still churns.

1 comment:

  1. I'd read Surely you're joking Mr. Feynman, but not The Meaning of it All - I think I have to get that one.... thanks