Sunday, February 8, 2009

Block and Tackle or was that Tackling Block?

Lately I've had some shall we say, difficulty, getting my thoughts to flow from my overly cluttered mind and onto a pad of paper or Word document.  Finally, the denial stage is done and I've admitted to myself that I'm suffering from writer's block.  Not being alone in my suffering does nothing to alleviate it, but chocolate and loud music seem to help immensely.  

Another friend, also a writer, has been suffering a similar fate.    She and I have formed a mutual support system of encouragement (nice words for we nag one another) and it's been successful. For one of us, anyway.  She's produced two and a half chapters of work since we started and I've written about 500 words.  The depths of my jealousy could dig a hole beneath my feet all the way to New South Wales.  But not jealous because of the breadth of her work.  It's more like I keep coming up with all of these wonderful ideas that are going to make this a much longer piece than I ever imagined and I need to reign myself in so that I can focus on one of them.   So, I'm trying to devise a system of organization that will let me write in non-linear pieces and then work on the flow.

In the meantime, my dearest darling friends from the other side of the Atlantic have sent music to soothe my savage beast.  David, the hottest thing going in Northern Ireland, sent a compilation that has featured wonderful artists such as Lisa Mikovsky, Santogold (a fave), Tricky, Travis, Heather Nova, Chairlife and Little Jackie to name a few.  I think my current favorite track from the disc is by Amaral and is titled, Kamikaze.

My friend Beat who rocks the house in Zurich sent me an awesome compilation that features the Raveonettes, Elbow, Deerhunter, Super Furry Animals (always a fave since their song Venus and Serena), M83, Sebastien Tellier and Martina Topley-Bird tripping the list of win.  Beat's compilations are always a favorite with my two sons who still love Wir sin Helden's Zuhalter, affectionately known to them as the rubber band song.  Kids, what can you do?  Both compilations are lovely and eclectic, just like their composers.  

I wanted to embed a youtube video of at least a couple of these songs, but I still seem to be on the blacklist with Blogger because no matter how many times I read the directions, I still don't seem to get it right.  Sorry about that.  Feel free to youtube any of these acts and you might just help me dance my way around the block.  I'm holding out hope.


Ann Victor said...

LOL, on the chocolate! I find it helps for everything!! Writer's block is such a pain! Good luck with digging your way out of it. I'm sure you've been given stacks of advice so all I'll say is...keep up with the chocolate!!

Re getting organised, did you follow that great series called The Organized Writer on Jeff Abbot's blog? He's given some terrific tips. I'm don't how to link in a comment but here's the webaddress:

It's worth checking through the archives for hsi organizational tips.

Pamala Knight said...

Thanks for the tip and the nod to Jeff's blog, Ann. I appreciate the encouragement and am making progress. One step at a time, right?

freakyfrites said...

Hey, Pamala!

I know how you feel! I call it wading through the mud. It took a few rebukes from my non-writing husband: "WHEN are you going to finish the novel???" to get me to refocus. That nagging stuff sometimes works.

The only thing that works for me when I'm feeling uninspired is to shut up the inner critic and start writing anything that pops into my head. I usually get into it and forget that I was blocked.

And remember! Blogging counts as writing, so you're definitely not slacking off :)

Marilyn Brant said...

"Chocolate and Loud Music" are a writer's salvation, my friend! I love that you've told us about new musical groups and will definitely check them out. But do not despair about the organization thing. From what I understand, this just takes a bit of trial and error. You will figure it out, I know. I'm a compulsively linear writer, so my organizational strategies would probably not be much help (though I'd be happy to share them with you :), but perhaps you could ask for tips at the meeting tonight??

p.s. I can't figure out how to embed videos either. I blame Blogger, not us :).

Nancy J. Parra said...

Oh- my heart goes out to you on your writer's block. I'm like Marilyn-I write linear-so I'm no help-but for me, I've learned that I hit a kind of writers block every time at certain points in the story-to overcome I must simply write what feels like dog poo for a while. I tell myself I can always edit it out later...

elegantextracts said...

You are definitely not alone. I had turned to beer, but I don't think that was working very well. Now I'm de-cluttering my house since I am convinced that this is the problem.

Robin said...

I write linear too, but have found that if I just let go, that if I don't try so hard to get it right the first time, the words start to flow much more easily. I wish you the best of luck! And thank goodness for chocolate and music!