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Creativity coach, writing and creative process instructor, speaker, author of Around the Writer's Block: Using Brain Science to Write the Way You Want (Penguin/Tarcher 2012) and Dancing in the Dragon's Den (Red Wheel Weiser), Teaching Artist at the Loft Literary Center.

Are you a Brainy Writer?

mind canstockphoto6854866You might be surprised – the answers to some of these questions may be counter-intuitive.

You’ll have an advantage if you’ve been reading this blog for awhile or have read at least some of Around the Writer’s Block: Using Brain Science to Solve Writer’s Resistance.

Let me know how you do on the quiz and what topics you’d like to read more about in future posts.

1.  True or False: Writer’s block is not “all in your head,” but it is all in your brain.

2.  True or False: Writers can finish several novels in a lifetime writing only 15 minutes a day.

3.  True or False: There are times when taking a nap is the best way to make progress on a writing project.

4.  True or False: Writer’s block is the most common form of resistance.

5.  Why does a small commitment to writing, as little as 15 minutes a day, make brain sense?

a.  Most writers are too busy to do more
b.  A small commitment is inviting and doesn’t trigger a limbic system takeover
c.  It makes it easier to postpone other tasks
d.  All of the above
e. a and b
f.  b and c

6.  What’s most important for a writer?

a.  Discipline
b.  Inspiration
c.  Habits
d.  Talent
e.  All of the above

7. Which is a productive use of writing time?
a.  Research
b.  Finger-painting
c.  Working out at the gym
d.  All of the above
e.  a and c

8.  What kind of writers experience writer’s block and other forms of resistance?

a.  Students and people who write on the job
b.  Beginning or emerging writers
c. Professional writers
d.  All of the above

9.  There are 6 stages of the creative process. In how many of those stages does a writer actually do what we commonly identify as “writing?”
a.  6
b.  4
c.  3
d.  1


  1. True. See pages 14, 15, 27 of Around the Writer’s Block for more information.
  2. True. See pages 79-81.
  3. True. See pages 68 and 100.
  4. False. See pages 211-215.
  5. e. See pages 82-83.
  6. c. See pages 3 and 11.
  7. d. See pages 73, 40, 102.
  8. d. See page 5.
  9. d. See page 69.


9 or 10 correct: Outstanding! Haven’t I seen you in a class or at a workshop?

7 or 8 correct: Well done! You’ve been reading, haven’t you?

5 or 6 correct: Good for you! Keep browsing the blog or reading the book; you’re on the right track.

0 to 4 correct: Welcome! I think you’re going to be relieved when you learn the truth about writing resistance.

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5 Comments on “Are you a Brainy Writer?”

  1. rrltd February 21, 2013 at 9:44 pm #

    Rosanne, Is is ok to share with a writer friend- think she would like to subscribe. Thanks, Mary

    Mary Z. McGrath, PhD, CSMA Reflections Resources, Ltd. http://www.maryzmcgrath.com

    Like Reflections Resources, Ltd. on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Reflections-Resources-Ltd/247360210777

    Follow Mary Z. McGrath on Twitter http://twitter.rs/maryzmcgrath


    • rosannebane February 24, 2013 at 10:29 pm #

      Hi Mary,
      Please do share my blog with your writer friends. Thanks.


      • rrltd September 26, 2013 at 12:42 pm #

        Good and will do that in the future.


  2. Joel D Canfield February 21, 2013 at 1:13 pm #

    I think the reason I missed 6 is because my schedule is so sloppy loose that we’re not even scheduling time off to move next week, ’cause nobody will even notice we’re gone. But when I’m coaching my authors, it’s second nature to assume they’re busy. Can I have half a point? 😉

    Your answer to 7 threw me for a moment until I realized there were two “d” answers and you meant the second one, not the first one . . .


    • rosannebane February 24, 2013 at 10:32 pm #

      Yes, Joel you can have a half point! And thanks for calling my attention to the typo (which helped me see another one). Opps! That’s what happens when I’m rushing to get a blog scheduled before slipping out of town to teach a workshop. I’ll fix it right away. I hope your move is uneventful and brings you to a wonderful new space.


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