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View Full Version : writers block? not always an issue


pylot
02-10-2012, 12:39 PM
hi.

one of the many struggles of a writer, whether proffessional or amatuer is “writers block“ and many, many people give up. they throw down their pen and say “fuck it, to the pub.“ fair enough if that's how you roll, then that's how you roll, no question.

what i worry about though is the thousands of writers who come up with a million-and-one ideas, then give up because nothing works together. this shouldn't be happening (the giving up). instead, file it away, each new unrelated idea store away safely, and when an addition to the tale is thought up... put it with the rest of the ideas, pages and post-it notes that work along the same concept.

i‘m not perfect and many may say
I've just stated the bleedin‘ obvious, but many others may value the thought and its a concept often over-looked.

randi.lee
02-10-2012, 05:56 PM
x2. When I can't complete an idea from start to finish I put it aside. I have journals that are ten years old with ideas I've just recently returned to. I'm glad I didn't chuck those ideas, because they're finally becoming relevant!

Bufty
02-10-2012, 06:09 PM
That's nothing to do with writer's block.

Worry about other folk's tossed aside ideas if you must but all you are doing is drumming up competition for yourself.;)

It's not a concept - it's commonsense but ideas are ten-a penny and worthless without being turned into writing.

Some folk like the idea of coming up with ideas that go nowhere.

It's called being in love with the idea of being a writer.

And Welcome. :welcome:

thethinker42
02-10-2012, 07:03 PM
It's not a concept - it's commonsense but ideas are ten-a penny and worthless without being turned into writing.

Some folk like the idea of coming up with ideas that go nowhere.

It's called being in love with the idea of being a writer.


Well said.

It's not writer's block, it's "don't wanna do the work."

pylot
02-10-2012, 09:45 PM
in posting the thread, i was thinking more of the novice or new writer, than the numerous educated writer who (as you have all pointed out) should already have the sense to file away.
my intention was solely to aid those who find themselves blocked by a chaos of ideas, with know idea of the order that must be wrought into their creativity for writings to flow from inciting incident to the very climax that puts characters into “at the end of the line“ decisions.

the thought popped up as during my education, i have never really been taught to organise my creativity and seeing as the rest of my mentality is disorganised at best, i figured there must be others who are similar in that thought process.

Bufty
02-10-2012, 10:07 PM
Your desire to help others is commendable but sifting away an endless stream of ideas helps nobody to concentrate upon writing tales based upon an idea.

Are you saying that eventually the party concerned may realise that two or three of those ideas might possibly go together to make up a story?

It only takes one idea to start a tale. The most important thing is the desire to actually start writing.

Celia Cyanide
02-10-2012, 10:31 PM
what i worry about though is the thousands of writers who come up with a million-and-one ideas, then give up because nothing works together. this shouldn't be happening (the giving up).

Perhaps it should be. People don't need to follow through with something they don't want to do.

dangerousbill
02-10-2012, 10:38 PM
what i worry about though is the thousands of writers who come up with a million-and-one ideas, then give up because nothing works together. this shouldn't be happening (the giving up).


People who don't take the time to learn the craft and develop the discipline aren't writers, they're wannabes. I don't need the extra competition from people who want to be writers but won't pay their dues. Functioning writers are already producing more than enough good fiction to keep the literary machine running.

Is that what you meant?

gettingby
02-11-2012, 01:00 AM
Dangerousbill - I love that you said "functioning writers." Hahaha.

WriteMinded
02-11-2012, 08:17 AM
You might want to find something else to worry about.

contrariwise
02-11-2012, 02:31 PM
That's my problem, I think. I have all these ideas, but I feel so lost about how to structure them into a coherent storyline.

Layla Nahar
02-11-2012, 06:14 PM
Some folk like the idea of coming up with ideas that go nowhere.
It's called being in love with the idea of being a writer.

Perhaps, but for every such person, there is someone who hates coming up with ideas that are hard to follow through with and is trying to figure out how to find viable ideas for writing.


It's not writer's block, it's "don't wanna do the work."
Just wondering how you know that.


It only takes one idea to start a tale. The most important thing is the desire to actually start writing.

The idea has to be a viable story idea. One can write, hundreds of words a day, five or six days a week, and fail to write a story.

This thread has me wondering why it's ok to be dismissive about the difficulty some people have when they try to act on their creative impulses. I'm wondering why it's ok to make declarations about what's going on in the mind's of other people (especially when such declarations are stated as fact, rather than opinion, and are dismissive and belittling.)

Layla Nahar
02-11-2012, 06:17 PM
That's my problem, I think. I have all these ideas, but I feel so lost about how to structure them into a coherent storyline.

That's pretty much where I was when I first started. I'd advise a couple of things. It helped me a lot to try writing stories not as "I'm inspired and I want to write this story that is in my heart" (those stories are still there, waiting for the day when my skillz are sufficient) - but rather to just write stories, each one as an exercise.

The most important thing is to learn how to finish, so I'd recommend writing some stories the only goal being to make sure each one has a beginning, middle and end. Dumb is ok, you can keep these efforts entirely to yourself, and anyway, they are just exercises, right?

In order to be able to actually write a story, I read a lot of short stories and rewrote them essentially as outlines. I looked for similar elements across the stories, and then used those as a basis for 'assigning' myself an exercise, something like, "write a story about a person who ..."

Some people seem to know without thinking how stories work. For whatever reason, this part seems to be tricky for others. My take on it is you want to write for a reason, and for whatever other reason(s) your output is likely to be less direct (for want of a better way of expressing it) than it is for others.

Keep at it :)
LN

bearilou
02-11-2012, 06:27 PM
Some people seem to know without thinking how stories work. For whatever reason, this part seems to be tricky for others.

I'm in that second group. I have ideas, always have ideas. At the beginning, I had no idea how to follow through because some basic things that many writers already know in one form or another, I really didn't.

But in my desire to get them written down, I learned. I pushed up my sleeves, got books, got myself on this board, wrote and set aside things that were abysmal and kept writing. Hopefully, kept improving.

If it's wanted bad enough, they'll do the work and learn. It's not like the internet has a dearth of information.

Bufty
02-11-2012, 06:49 PM
There's nothing belittling or dismissive about saying that in order to learn how to write one has to start writing.

Staring at a blank page all day and/or darting from one idea to the next achieves nothing.

Not being able to come up with a viable idea is a different scenario but once again if one doesn't start putting words on paper one will never learn.

Seems to me that acting on a creative impulse - presumably an idea - means translating it into words on paper. One can either start writing the tale or start writing an outline but writing is the important element.



Perhaps, but for every such person, there is someone who hates coming up with ideas that are hard to follow through with and is trying to figure out how to find viable ideas for writing.


Just wondering how you know that.



The idea has to be a viable story idea. One can write, hundreds of words a day, five or six days a week, and fail to write a story.

This thread has me wondering why it's ok to be dismissive about the difficulty some people have when they try to act on their creative impulses. I'm wondering why it's ok to make declarations about what's going on in the mind's of other people (especially when such declarations are stated as fact, rather than opinion, and are dismissive and belittling.)

jaksen
02-11-2012, 07:50 PM
That's nothing to do with writer's block.

Worry about other folk's tossed aside ideas if you must but all you are doing is drumming up competition for yourself.;)

It's not a concept - it's commonsense but ideas are ten-a penny and worthless without being turned into writing.

Some folk like the idea of coming up with ideas that go nowhere.

It's called being in love with the idea of being a writer.

And Welcome. :welcome:

Yes, yes, YES!

I have often seen (on this forum and others) where a poster will give a list of ideas, then ask which one of these would you do? Or is most workable? Or is most interesting? Etc.

Or, they post a synopsis of a story - sometimes a looooong and hard-to-read and confusing synopsis - and ask for critique on the synopsis, with, whadya think, fellow writers? Do you see plot loopholes? Should I add/delete characters? Whadya think of my plot overall?

I go nuts with these posts and usually ignore them, but sometimes I do respond with: WRITE, first. Write something, anything, part of it, all of it, the last chapter, a middle chapter, something, anything.

Some people are simply in love with ideas and will conjure them up ad infinitum (ad nauseum?) but seldom put those ideas into a coherent tale, story, novel or screenplay.

To be a writer, one must write.

contrariwise
02-12-2012, 02:46 AM
In order to be able to actually write a story, I read a lot of short stories and rewrote them essentially as outlines. I looked for similar elements across the stories, and then used those as a basis for 'assigning' myself an exercise, something like, "write a story about a person who ..."That is a great idea. I guess that's how you learn anything else. You learn to draw by copying pictures. Then when you can copy them well, you're ready to draw pictures of your own. It hadn't occurred to me that you can learn to write in the exact same way.

pylot
02-12-2012, 08:48 PM
true, to write, you must WRITE. but my point is that a page, a chapter, a scene or act may not fit, but high chance writer will cling to it and get stuck when the story falls flat.

my advice is to never throw a piece of story away. keep it store it then one day writer may flick through and stumble on an old piece of text that in turn sparks off a whole new story.

i use “writer“ instead of you/me/he/she to cover all this may apply to.

Layla Nahar
02-13-2012, 06:28 AM
There's nothing belittling or dismissive about saying that in order to learn how to write one has to start writing.

I agree. But you said something different.

There are many people with very strong desires to do something creative - play guitar, paint a picture, etc but for whom acting upon those desires is difficult because of conflicting ideas and difficult feelings. It does them little help when people say things that would reinforce the idea that they are, say, fake, or shouldn't be doing this etc. That was my problem with the tone of your post and another. I saw this as diminishing the kind of things some people struggle with. I see this kind of idea expressed from time to time and it grates. Made me want to put in my 2c.

pylot
02-14-2012, 02:59 AM
Are you saying that eventually the party concerned may realise that two or three of those ideas might possibly go together to make up a story?

Sorry i missed this post last time and yes that is the essence of what i was saying. But i more meant that some one can sit down and have one idea, then the next day write a chapter of something that just popped into their head. they repeat this for months every day a few more ideas arrive then bang, they hit a wall because all these amazing ideas don't fit together.
what i was trying to say is people with this issue should stop clinging too forcing the pieces to fit and just strip the bits that don't fit until the picture finally comes to view.

i was once told that 90% of screen writers work is scrapped before the movies budgeted. i feel this applies in the proccess of writing a good tale.