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Blanche has Writer's Block

How to Cure Creative Constipation, aka Writer’s Block

The metaphor of constipation for writer’s block has been around for a long time… Back in 1992, Clarissa Pinkola Estés talked about creative constipation in her audio recording The Creative Fire (Sounds True). She defined creativity as psychic excrement that we all naturally produce and need to express daily. Otherwise psychic toxins build up, and voilà, […]

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What’s Your Writing Mountain?

Your big writing dream – a novel, short story collection, memoir, screenplay, chapbook, publishing a piece in a publication you admire or consistently posting to your blog – is your mountain. You can spend all your time staring up at the mountain, marveling at how high it is, how dangerous the weather looks, how amazing […]

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The More You Don’t Get Eaten by a Tiger: Guest Post by Deb Norton

I’ve been reading Deb Norton’s blog PartWild for a couple of years and I always find myself nodding along with her insights. We resonate. So I wouldn’t be surprised if some of you who follow BaneOfYourResistance also follow PartWild. When I read “The More You Don’t Get Eaten by a Tiger,” I nodded so vigorously, […]

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Pick Up Your Pen and Put Down Writer’s Block

It may be that what you think of as writer’s block or resistance is simply the result of forsaking writing by hand. To support that conclusion, I wanted to quote at least half of a NYT article about how losing handwriting affects learning and brain function. I decided instead to simply send you there to […]

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Neither Twisted Writer or Blocked Writer – Dreaming Writer

In a comment on a previous post, Judy Westergard wrote that her readers are the darlings she needs to kill to give herself freedom to write what needs to be written. Most writers, when they talk about killing their darlings, are referring to particular lines or passages that they just love, but that don’t really […]

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Evil Genius... Is there any other kind?

Twisted Writer or Blocked Writer: How Much Is Enough?

My previous post raised questions about hurting fictional characters: Do you question yourself about your willingness to write the scenes where people are going to get hurt? Do you stop short of where the story needs to go because you’re afraid of what others will think of you? How do you know when you’ve gone […]

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Twisted Writer or Blocked Writer? Which One Do You Want to Be?

T.R. realized she was resistant to writing because she was reluctant to hurt a character and “take him apart.” The unwillingness to make characters suffer is a common source of writing resistance. Unwillingness to make real people suffer in real life is what separates us from sociopaths. In memoir, personal essays and other creative nonfiction, […]

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New Book Update: Are Targets Dangerous for Writers?

About a month ago, Sara, a coaching client, and I talked about how she could set target dates as she drafted her novel. She decided to set a target for so many words per week and target dates for reaching specified total number of words. We talked about the potential emotional hazards this posed for […]

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Nothing Beats Writer’s Block Like Doing Nothing

Writer’s block consists of exerting an excruciating amount of energy to accomplish nothing. I suggest you skip the painful part, and do nothing right from the start. Writers need plenty of time to do nothing and do it well. Brenda Ueland intuited the value of time to do nothing back in 1938 when she wrote […]

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Kelda learning to be brave with big sister Blue

Learn to Be Brave, Not Blocked

Pain is Tuition for Compassion, Fear is Tuition for Bravery A Sufi adage tells us, “Pain is the tuition for compassion.” Until you’ve experienced deep pain yourself, you are incapable of the compassion that calls forth the best parts of human beings and allows us to connect heart to heart, deep below the surface of […]

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