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> The Writer's Block
girlbomb
post Aug 22 2007, 06:04 AM
Post #121


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Oh, raisingirl, I know -- the whole Artist's Way thing is so twee, and such a cult. I totally don't blame you for being put off by it; whenever I recommend it, I recommend it in a whisper, with a million caveats about how corny it is. I never did the "artist's date," or any of the other exercises -- the only thing I did was daily free-writing in my notebook (that's probably a better thing to call it than "morning pages"), but that was the thing that got me really going, and keeps me going.

The thing is, we can set as many page count goals as we want, but if we don't know WHAT to write those pages about, it's still going to be frustrating. I still experience this every time I finish a project -- the blank page looms in front of me, like, "What now? What now? What now?" And I definitely know the feeling of wanting to write but being afraid of the painful subject matter. It's not an easy task, writing, but if you've ever felt the calling to write, you're shit out of luck -- you've got to answer it, or you'll feel unfulfilled.
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tatiana
post Aug 21 2007, 06:48 PM
Post #122


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Arrrgh. I've had four months off in betweeen terms and I've written a grand total of 3 or 4 pages. I was supposed to be finished these two stories by now so I could try to write something with a hope of commercial viability.

100 words a day? I'd settle for 50 at this point.
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raisingirl
post Aug 21 2007, 01:58 PM
Post #123


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Oh no, GB. No, no, no, no, no! *rubs eyes*

Are they really the best thing that have happened to you? Because if you're saying this, I have to accept it as truth! And I don't want to do that! I loved your book (and am eagerly awaiting the second one, oh yes I am), I totally think you are such an inspiration as a writer, and to know that the morning pages worked for you... well, that's something, all right.

I tried the morning pages and Artist's Way dealie several years ago. I really tried them. But I COULD NOT STAND IT! It did nothing for me. It made me feel like a retard. I did it with a group of friends and I can't believe any of them even want to talk to me anymore, I bitched about the Artist's Way so much back then. I tried to keep an open mind, blah blah blah, what we're most resistant to is sometimes what we most need, so on and so forth, but I couldn't stand the morning pages, the artist dates, etc. It was something for the life of me I could not get into.

Oh, and you know what? I was actually writing for an audience back then. Sure, it was a small audience, I'm sure, but I was still writing and had to deal with deadlines and rewriting and all of that. Somehow I was able to do that without the aid of the MPs.

I still love you, GB, but I don't love the morning pages -- or Julia Cameron for that matter.

Different strokes for this folk, I guess.

I think what I hated about it so much was that for the longest time all I had been hearing was OHHHH THE ARTIST'S WAY IS SO WONDERFUL!!!!!! BIBLE BIBLE BIBLE!!!!!!!! MUST READ AND ABSORB ALL ITS GOODNESS!!!!!!!!! so maybe I had some lofty high expectations for it and when it just didn't jive with me (I don't know, I don't like her writing style, for one -- or her philosophy, for that matter), I ended up throwing it clear across the living room repeatedly until the spine cracked.

But I do vehemently agree with making the time and space for writing (or any pursuit, really, that one wants to improve at), making it a daily (or almost daily) commitment, to be done even when you're NOT IN THE MOOD. Especially when you're NOT IN THE MOOD. I think it helps to clear out the cobwebs.

Anyway, those are my thoughts and I'm sticking to them. I'm glad we're resurrecting this thread. I'm off to write now, in longhand.
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Moonpieluv
post Aug 21 2007, 07:38 AM
Post #124


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From: barebacking a pink fuzzy unicorn


Thanks for keeping this thread going! I still haven't written a thing, but it's like I'm afraid to write cause there's a lot in there, ya know....

Wish I could write more, but.... my IT guy monitors the crap outta us. strict... but I'll be up and running (and writing?) soon!
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bunnyb
post Aug 21 2007, 05:27 AM
Post #125


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I need to discipline myself to write morning pages; hell, just to do the 100 words a day!

off-topic: I didn't know that Julia Cameron used to be married to Martin Scorcese!


--------------------
"Hey, did anyone ever think Sylvia Plath wasn't crazy, maybe she was just cold? " (Lorelai Gilmore)
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girlbomb
post Aug 20 2007, 03:09 PM
Post #126


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The 100 word commitment sounds great. Also, as corny and hack as this may sound, I found Julia Cameron's The Artist's Way to be super helpful. The morning pages (mine are more like lunch pages) are, twelve years after I started doing them, still the best thing that ever happened for my writing. Of course, I still experience episodes of block and fear and frustration too, during which I want to drop dead.
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raisingirl
post Aug 19 2007, 07:57 PM
Post #127


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MissThing has migrated to LJ-land and she does still do those 100 word exercises!

Bunny, I don't think I've done a storybook or board before, but that program sounds like fun.

After several years of avoiding it, I do think I want to try my hand at poetry.

I surround myself with books, but I sure do miss writing.
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bunnyb
post Aug 18 2007, 09:37 AM
Post #128


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QUOTE(Moonpieluv @ Jul 31 2007, 08:15 PM) *
I like books, want to be around them, and want to eventually write one.


Those are my sentiments too, moonpieluv.

On that note: I started to write a novel today. I've wanted to be a writer since I was knee-high to a grasshopper and I'm not putting it off any longer. I have no idea whether what I've written today will go anywhere, whether there will be a finished product or if it will take me off in another direction writing something else but I've started and I'm excited.

The premise of the novel is an idea I've had for a couple of years and it will involve a lot of work and research but I think I can do it. I don't have all of the elements yet or a fully-fledged plot but I'm writing down what I do have: so far that is an opening chapter (to work on) and a tentative closing line as well as the overall, if vague idea.

I've recently moved from PC to Mac and love Apple's Pages - it comes with its own storyboard creator! Has anyone done a storybook before? I read during the week that they are a must for pitches so thought I'd buy a storyboard book but now I've discovered I can do it from my macbook! I'm going to use it to structure my proposed novel but have no idea where to start...

I have a couple of other writing projects I'm toying with and want to discipline myself to write a regular book blog but The Book is the main thing.

100 words a day, if nothing else.


--------------------
"Hey, did anyone ever think Sylvia Plath wasn't crazy, maybe she was just cold? " (Lorelai Gilmore)
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sukouyant
post Aug 3 2007, 05:02 PM
Post #129


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Moonluvpie, The Bustie formerly (currently? where are you??) known as Miss Thing posted a writing exercise in this thread that sounded like fun and worked for her to loosen her ink.

This site over here: http://www.100words.com
To play you need to write 100 words, no more, no less, everyday for a month. The craft is in the commitment and the outside limitations imposed.

This is them: "You can write about anything you want. Anything. Some people open tiny windows into their lives; others write surrealist poetry. Some writers post finely tuned, perfectly crafted vignettes; others show up at the end of the night and spew drunken nonsense onto the screen."
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Moonpieluv
post Jul 31 2007, 12:58 PM
Post #130


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From: barebacking a pink fuzzy unicorn


Ohhh... yes. I've been backed up blocked like a reststop toilet in ole'kentucky for some years now. People tell me to write, damn it. But.. I don't. I'll take those suggestions down below... and I have some good books that my mee-maw gave me...

I like books, want to be around them, and want to eventually write one.
That's why I want to work in a library.. hoping all the great authors and what not will blow some writer's dust under the ass and get me started again.

I already have a buddy who is published and lives in SF....

blargh.
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sukouyant
post Jul 4 2007, 05:43 PM
Post #131


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From: Canada


Bumpity bump
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wombat
post Jan 1 2007, 12:44 PM
Post #132


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True enough, chacha!


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chachaheels
post Jan 1 2007, 11:23 AM
Post #133


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From: allover, wherever, unsettled


Oh, Wombat, the collective creative endeavor can be a communal nightmare of epic proportions. It's not always as rosy as one thinks and there is always someone who delights in frustrating the process somehow.

Can you tell I've come to prefer the lonely frustration of kicking my own ass into gear? At least it's only one person to be frustrated with!

I found a couple of writers' sites that might spur you on, if you're in the mood to do some writing:

writing exercises and 50 tools to help you in writing

Have fun!


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May suitable doses of guaranteed sensual pleasure and slow, long-lasting enjoyment preserve us from the contagion of the multitude who mistake frenzy for efficiency.
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wombat
post Dec 31 2006, 12:03 PM
Post #134


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thankee, raisin! I think the trouble is that creative stuff is not a group endeavor.

I always envied film makers and people in bands for this reason. I mean, their creative stuff is a group endeavor.

I have gotten less done because i didn't want to feel like the stereotyped dorky eccentric hiding away to do my stuff.


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raisingirl
post Dec 31 2006, 07:45 AM
Post #135


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Bumping for Free Spirit.
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wombat
post Nov 23 2006, 04:25 PM
Post #136


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From: Rattland


Oh, RATS!! I only discovered NaNoWriMo at the end of the month last year and then I forgot this year -- just PLUM FORGOT!!

One of these days -- I have two novels lurking around in here. I really wish I had a group for writing, for music, for the web/computer stuff too where we could just compare notes and share resources and not be ... competitive in a crappy way.

In a way, Bust boards are cool this way and in a way they're not.


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bunnyb
post Oct 25 2006, 01:38 PM
Post #137


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it's definitely the right (or write) thread for this! I remember it being mentioned last year, it's such a good idea - even if you get 20% of well-written words out of it, it's worth it, polishing can come later. It's a good exercise for discipline, reaching daily quota and blitz writing.


--------------------
"Hey, did anyone ever think Sylvia Plath wasn't crazy, maybe she was just cold? " (Lorelai Gilmore)
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faith
post Oct 25 2006, 12:39 PM
Post #138


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From: Taxation without representation


Anyone doing NaNoWriMo? (http://www.nanowrimo.org/) I thought perhaps last year some people here were trying it. If you're not familiar, it's a motivating deadline to write a 50,000 "work of lengthy fiction" in one month (November). It seems like a good exercise, even if it obviously wouldn't be a super-polished masterpiece. Or is this not the appropriate thread for such things?
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spirit lust
post Oct 5 2006, 06:13 PM
Post #139


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From: ambiguous


Yep, good points, little_idiot (not) and cleanoldguy (heh!).
One thing that's often brought up on writer's forums is the issue of writing for exposure vs writing for pay. A lot of writers begin with non-paying markets and move on to only wriitng for payment. That's how I went about it too. Some people have this "writers should never write for free" hautiness that I think is unfair to all the wonderful struggling and new mags/ezines out there. Some of my favourite markets can't afford to pay writers, but have good and established writers working for them. It all depends on how much time you have and how niche your interests are, I guess. I'd like to write for more good yet unpaid markets, but don't have the time, unfortunately. I support them in other ways, and I only write for pay.
Good writing!
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cleanoldguy
post Oct 5 2006, 12:16 PM
Post #140


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'little_idiot', who clearly isn't an idiot, says: "Another important thing is to get to know the market you want to write for...."

Absolutely essential. Otherwise you're shooting blindly into midair, hoping to hit a duck.

One other bit of advice: Read online magazines. There are thousands of them, ranging from dreadful to wonderful, and on any subject you could conceivably be interested in.

Very few online magazines pay anything, but many are well regarded places to be published and your pieces there are quite respectable. The days of "only print publication counts" are long gone. Ezines are an excellent way to build your bibliography.

Here are a few good literary ezines; all have links to others, so potentially you could be reading a long time. Check the submission guidelines on the ones that appeal to you, and good luck.

http://webdelsol.com/

http://eclectica.org/

http://alsopreview.com/

http://www.2river.org/

http://www.poetserv.org/index.html

For magazines on your own pet subjects? That's why God gave us Google (and the annual "Writer's Market" books).

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