The absurdity of writer’s block
Almost daily someone, in one of the online groups I participate in, asks for prayers about their so-called writer’s block. I just read an very good article by Andrew Lewis Conn in Publisher’s Weekly. He makes some excellent points—giving 7 methods of getting through this blockage of the creative flow. Talking about the reality of writer’s block he suggests imagining it happening in another profession:
…imagine you break your arm in an automobile accident. It’s a bad fracture and you’re rushed to the emergency room. There you are, lying on the table, bone jutting out, with a tourniquet corded around your arm, and in comes a brooding, Byronic-looking doctor who informs you that he’d love to set your arm but he can’t today, just can’t, because he’s suffering from “physician’s block.” Everyone’s working life is hard: do your job.
After I finished chuckling, I started musing on why I never have writer’s block—and what that means. I decided [discovered] that it was tied up with my faith—as usual.
Are you called to write or not!
That’s what you need to settle first. If Jesus has called you to write books or a book, you need to take that very seriously. If He has given you a job, He will supply all the resources necessary to accomplish that. He’s not a mean God. He loves you. Just do it.
It is true that it will be part of your discipleship. It may get painful and uncomfortable. The call may force you into a place where you must decide if you are going to serve Jesus in this or not. For our little boy or girl to the left, his/her grief for someone who has disappeared has caused a loss of focus on writing. On the other hand, if those feelings and thoughts are remembered and analyzed, they will be of great help in explaining a character’s actions who’s going through something similar.
So, it really isn’t “writer’s block” but personal research. If you are developing a story in your head, you are writing. If you are jotting down character description, locations, and whatever else that becomes part of the world you are creating in your book—you are writing.
If I ever stop writing, I’ll ask the Lord what he wants me to do next
However, if the call is still there, I write. If I am still getting ideas; if I have multiple books in the works; I’ll know the calling and the resources to do it are not worth a worry. He promised to care for us. He will supply what we need to work the good works He has called us to do.
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for God is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. Phil.2:12-13 RSV