Friday, September 16, 2011

Chapter 2? Failure...

So today started out with the best of intentions.  I was going to finish chapter 2!  I was going to sit down and work out the details I need to figure it out and get it written.

As you can probably guess that didn't happen.  I am having such writer's block with this one and it's really bothering me because Chapter 1 started off so well and ended with me being satisfied if not 100% happy with it and now chapter 2 has be totally stumped.  Do I start off with the same character from chapter 1?  Do I move to one of the other characters and if so which one?  What works the best, what will be the smoothest... ugh.

I actually think one of the biggest reasons that I'm struggling with chapter 2 is because of stress.  When stressor after stressor gets dropped on you all on the same day it has a way to stifle creativity.  But in all fairness I was kind of having the same problem before today.  So what to do with writer's block?

Today I've done a lot of networking, critiqued some other people's works (I hope I was useful) partly to be useful, partly because I eventually want my work critiqued and partly because I wanted to and spent some time with my mom.

I also worried about work (or lack there-of), worried about not being able to crack Chapter 2, and before I knew it found everything around me that I had ever worried about in the last month kind of attacking me.  This made me feel a lot like the world is falling apart.  It makes me feel sick and weary very quickly and the last thing I do is want to write.  So what am I doing about it?  I'm writing a blog post and later I think I will go and work on a short story for awhile.  Who knows, maybe it'll help knock something loose.  Right now I need something I'm not so worried about screwing up and I think that's what's happening with Chapter 2.  If I can't get my groove going again by the end of Friday after trying to write something else for awhile then I'll move back to the drawing board and re-consider the storyline.  I was pretty sure this would be chapter 1, but who knows, maybe I'm still searching.  At least blogging is writing about something.


  1. I've really found Bob Mayer's books to help me with 'writer's block.' That fear of messing up can really stifle us. Stephen King says that fear is actually at the root at most - if not all - bad writing! Crazy, hey? Anyhow, Bob is really good at just motivating me to KEEP GOING, even when it feels like I'm absolutely stuck. Good luck as you push through all this stuff! I totally understand this process.

  2. Thank you Lana, I really appreciate that. It's always nice to know you're not alone in things like this and I really appreciate you taking the time to comment and encourage!

  3. Steph,

    One thing I found helped me with writing my story was setting up a GRAND outline. Plot out your entire story. Then, whenever you're intending to write, look at it, and find a chapter you think you can get going. I don't know if this method would work for you, but I know writing in a non-linear fashion helped me a lot as I was able to leave chapters I couldn't quite figure out for later and write the ones I had ideas for immediately.

    And as Lana said. Just write. Screw it. Just write. Sometimes you'll throw out what you write, but that's fine, so long as you're producing something.


  4. Stress could be one reason. However, I've found that every single time I've ever had writer's block it's because my subconscious (my writer's intuition or whatever you want to call it) knows there's something wrong with the next scene I'm trying to write.

    I was blocked on my current story for quite a while until I realized what I thought was the "next" scene (the one that was keeping me blocked) wasn't supposed to happen yet. It belongs later in the story. Once I realized that, I jumped to another scene and was writing again! And on some of my past stories, I've gotten writers block for other various reasons, like trying to write a scene with a character I wasn't really familiar with yet, etc.

    Or if you feel bored by the scene you're trying to write then my answer would be to skip it and write the scene after that. Maybe you don't need that boring scene and it can be summed up simply by "The next morning..." And if a scene is boring for you to write, it's going to be boring for your readers too. So the best thing you can do is skip and come back to it later if necessary.

    Don't be discouraged--just keep writing! Even if it means skipping a chapter!