Thoughts on Writer’s Block – I’m Sorry (but not really)

I have not forgotten you dear readers! I haven’t been particularly attentive with my blogging duties lately. In fact, I’ve been downright neglectful in the last half year, but I can say that I haven’t forgotten you because I never knew most of you to begin with. Also, my blog is free, so you get what you pay for. Ha!

I suppose Winter is a more bloggy time of year. During Winter I have nothing better to do than sit inside and think too much, which inevitably leads to me writing stuff down. Warmer times of the year encourage me to be outside, to spend time with family and friends, to accomplish long overdue projects, and to generally ignore my blog in favour of more physically productive activities. Winter is the season best suited for intellect and hermitage.

I had originally intended to keep a strict schedule of writing an article >500 words each week. Interesting, regular, dependable, like a good journalist. I would enjoy slowly developing into a decent author one blog post at a time. Unfortunately, I discovered that this was too ambitious. I just can’t bring myself to click “publish” on something I’ve written that I consider to be incomplete, unoriginal, or of inferior quality. For most articles, I require hours of research, reading, thinking and discussing my idea, in addition to the time spent in the more mundane task of actually writing and revising the text. It’s a lot to do, especially with other activities in my life that demand my attention. Perhaps I’m too much of a perfectionist to keep a schedule like a career writer or journalist. Instead, I’m going to enjoy the freedom of the internet blog, think and research when I have the time and inspiration to do so, and only publish articles when I damn well please.

I should apologize to any readers that look forward to my articles, on the off chance that someone does. I can’t keep a schedule. I expect I will continue to write in much the same way as I read: random spurts of interest in a specific topic followed by long periods of nothing. Genius can’t be rushed 😉

To be completely honest, I need to wait until I feel compelled to write something. It’s a very obvious feeling, and it makes the act of writing pleasurable. I feel engaged and hurried. My fingers can’t type fast enough to record what I’d like to say before my brain has moved onto the next idea – definitely the opposite of writer’s block. Attempting to write while uninspired is most certainly a giant waste of time.

I have thoughts and ideas floating around in my head until I need to discuss them, organize them, analyze them, and better understand them. I like the structure that writing imposes on ideas. Wimpy ideas don’t take shape because they don’t deserve to. A substantial concept lives in my mind like a murky, amorphous, unpleasant nagging until I finally chisel it into something concrete: an article. Once published, it remains unchanged and speaks for itself, typos and all.

Writer’s block seems to me like a term that has the entire concept of writing backwards. You don’t decide to be a writer and then go searching for something to write about. What a frustrating venture! Be a thinker first. A writer is just a thinker who can’t keep silent anymore.


About Zeno

Zeno is an engineering graduate, currently working as software developer in Canada. The alias was adopted in honour of Zeno of Citium, the founder of Stoic philosophy in ancient Greece.
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