Archive | July, 2011

Jettison Judgment and Develop Discernment (to Reduce Writer’s Block)

My second recommendation to Liz’s question about achieving a healthy balance between pride and humility is to jettison judgment and develop discernment. I have a theory that judgment is at the heart of every writer’s block (and most other forms of writing resistance). Usually it’s negative judgment and harsh criticism that creates resistance. But I’ve […]

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Balance Pride and Humility to Reduce Writing Resistance

In response to previous posts on humility, Liz Ward asked, “Could I be humility on steroids? If someone compliments my writing, I dismiss them because I KNOW I’m merely an adequate writer with only a hope of being better–it doesn’t matter that I’ve been trained and have made writing a part of a 30-year career. […]

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10 Reasons Every Writer Should Have a Dog

Sound familiar? Well it is summer and that means re-runs. Here’s why I’m repeating a previously published post: I talked with my editor about revisions on Around the Writer’s Block last week and that’s where my focus is right now. I tried drafting a new post today but realized it’s just not ready for prime-time […]

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10 Ways Humility Reduces Resistance

Humility does not mean we’re worthless worms who have no right to feel proud of our work; it literally means we are “capable of being educated.” Without humility, we cannot learn. In his Modesty Manifesto, David Brooks asks us to embrace the virtue of modesty to restore balance. He’s not suggesting we should never feel […]

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Why We Resist Feedback (and Why and How to Stop)

In response to my recent post about the David Brooks “Modesty Manifesto” video, Rachel V. commented: “I think I see a lack of modesty in my writing when I feel unwilling to change something (like a scene or dialogue) that doesn’t work for my reader. Even if I know that my readers are giving me […]

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Recommendation: David Brooks Delivers a Modesty Manifesto at Aspen Ideas Festival

New York Times columnist David Brooks is a writer worthy of respect, a writer to emulate. Brooks consistently sifts through a vast array of research from credible sources, combines and interprets facts to create new insight and wisdom, and then wraps that intelligence with delightful humor that engages his audience. I highly recommend his book […]

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Play With the Random

If you don’t know where to start or where to go next in your writing, anything is possible. So there is no reason to not play around with random chance. Of course, a part of you will think “I can’t throw just anything into my writing. It wouldn’t make sense. It would be stupid.” And […]

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Feeling Blocked? Don’t Know What’s Next? Don’t Worry!

Writers are more likely to feel blocked when they’re trying to start a new piece of writing and don’t where to start or when they first get into a piece and don’t know where to go next. But not knowing is not the problem. It is the combination of not knowing AND thinking that you’re […]

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