Sometimes I Seriously Hate Writing. Can I Get A Little Help?

Via on Feb 24, 2013

Photo: Grosso
Photo: Grosso

Gasp, I know, it’s blasphemy, but it’s so goddamn true.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful to the word and the cathartic release it so often provides me with, but man, nothing sets fire to my insides more than that of watching that goddamn blinking cursor on my blank page as it taunts me.

Oh, and then there’s the voice, that awful, critical voice that loves to creep its way in during my most vulnerable times. The voice, which a few minutes ago so kindly told me that, “I can’t write for shit, and I’ve got nothing of worth to say.” That’s sure to get me second guessing every word, of every sentence, every time.

I mean, even at this very moment, I just want to click delete and show this page, these words, and that critical voice, who’s  boss. What I’ve learned the hard way however, is that by going that route, I’ll spend the next few hours mentally berating myself for being a failed writer instead of seeing this blog post, no matter how terrible, through to the end and just be done with it.

So which is the lesser evil? Finishing, and sharing, this very sub-par rant from an obviously disgruntled writer or, giving up and letting the voice win. I’m not entirely sure, but what my heart says to do is expose myself as the frustrated shitty writer that I am at this moment, in the hopes that these shitty words, in this shitty blog post, will possibly be read by someone who can relate and thus, know they’re not alone in their experience.

So besides walking away and taking a break, listening to inspiring music, or meditating/clearing the mind before writing, what helps you through your times of writer’s block? I don’t want to search the internet for cliché ideas and practices but rather, hear directly from you guys. What does and doesn’t work for you?

I find myself often writing with words flowing from my heart center in a virtually effortless way, but I’m yet to pinpoint the who/what/where/when/why and how of it and could use some help. With love.

Like elephant literary journal on Facebook.

Ed: Kate Bartolotta

About Chris Grosso

Chris Grosso is an independent culturist, freelance writer, spiritual aspirant, recovering addict, and musician. He serves as spiritual director of the interfaith center The Sanctuary at Shepardfields and created the popular hub for all things alternative, independent, and spiritual with TheIndieSpiritualist.com. Chris continues the exploration with his bestselling book titled Indie Spiritualist: A No Bullshit Exploration of Spirituality (Atria Books/Simon & Schuster). A self-taught musician, Chris has been writing, recording, and touring since the mid-1990s. Follow Chris on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

922 views

12 Responses to “Sometimes I Seriously Hate Writing. Can I Get A Little Help?”

  1. Rob says:

    I wait for a topic to come to me. It might come while I'm staring at the screen, but more than likely it will come to me while I'm out living life.

    • Agreed Rob! That's where 99% of it happens for me too. But with my book for instance, I'll get into it and sometimes just hit a block in a chapter, you know? Like okay, I received the idea and work on it to a certain point and then… nothing. Like I said in the article, it doesn't always happen but it does happen enough to become frustrating.

  2. @netminnow says:

    Did you do your best? YOUR best? We're not going to be 100%, 100% of the time. If nothing else, entropy. It is better to just keep moving. Sometimes moving through to the next place is the very best thing that can happen for that portion of our journey. What's important? To keep writing, that is it. I appreciate your good pieces enough that I'm willing to wade through something YOU might regard as sub-par. It could be that somedays you're not recognizing you're just transcribing for Creative Force/Higher Good. Chin-up, netminnow

  3. @ValVal108 says:

    Look out the window and write descriptively about what you see…Without saying what it is, use as rich and descriptive language as possible as if you were trying to explain it to someone who had never seen this amazing thing…..This will help redirect your brain and also reassure you that you are an exceptional writer. Sometimes we just need different motivators for writing. As an example, I'm supposed to be writing a paper on epistemology right now. And what am I doing? Looking at my Twitter feed! But know that this is all part of the process and accept yourself for exactly what is flowing onto the paper at this moment. Because that is exactly what you should be creating. Om shanti – Val Cholet

  4. @ValVal108 says:

    PS- That voice?? It's called the Superego or as I like to call it, "Catholic guilt" You're always hearing, "Nothing you do will ever be good enough". But it is all about trusting that you ARE good enough.

  5. Carolyn Riker Carolyn Riker says:

    so fucking true my heart hurts when I can't get the words out and I listen to the negative critical voices…let it go…and when I do the words flow again. thanks.

  6. [...] Sometimes I Seriously Hate Writing. Can I Get A Little Help? (elephantjournal.com) [...]

  7. karlsaliter says:

    I do, too. I walk away. I let go. I'm such a natural blabbermouth that there is very little worry I'll stay shushed for long. I also. Um. (glances over shoulder) revert to commenting on other people's posts. It helps.

    Sometimes I have to wade through a bunch of good ones, but then finally, I'll find a real (to me) stinker, and it will be genuine work to find some good in it to comment on. I love that challenge. I had a teacher cram it into my head that when shit goes sideways, help another. So there's a trick for ya.

  8. Kate Cone says:

    Thank you Chris! My sentiments exactly as I sit here on a frigid Monday morning wishing I had the discipline to "show up" to finish the novel I've been "finishing" for 5 years. Now that I know there is a kindred spirit out there, who has the courage to finish regardless of the voices, I'll show up too.

Leave a Reply