I firmly don’t believe in writer’s block. I think that it’s usually a matter of needing more planning, or to work on a different project. I can’t comprehend a world where someone is actually stuck and unable to write: there’s always backtracking to see how you wrote yourself into a corner, or outlining, or editing something else, or doing silly flash fiction to give your brain a break from the next Great American Novel.

But sometimes I hit a wall, and will stare at a scene I have planned out and have an overwhelming sense that if I write it, it will all be crap. Sometimes I stare at a list of projects I could work on and can’t even articulate cogent reasons why I should work on one over the other. Sometimes every single thing I put on screen is absolute crap and I want to delete the entire project.

I don’t think this is writer’s block. It’s nothing to do with the writing itself, or the story fighting me, or the characters misbehaving. It’s a sign that I am completely burned out, and need to have a glass of water and a nap. It’s a sign that the only creative output I’m capable of at the moment is knitting to a pattern.

Writer’s block is an annoying aspect of magical thinking: it gives writers problems that no one else has. Self-care is a universal issue that does not care what you do.

Spoiler: this post is super-short because I have a headache and knitting i-cord is about what I’m up to mentally.

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One thought on “Burnout Mode

  1. So you need time to nothing? Or something that is very easy and natural to you that it feels like nothing (don't know much about knitting sadly).
    An art teacher from school said to me one time that everyone needs a bit of time when they just do nothing, sleep or watch some tv – something that lets the brain rest up.

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