Help! It’s the proverbial writer’s block. How can an imaginary wall that only exists in the mind have so much strength? It certainly feels real as the mind tries to go around it, over it, under it, or through it. Then the wall mysteriously turns into quicksand; sucking the imagination from my dreamy head. Dreams pop like balloons. Even the balloon strings vanish. I’m left with…yeah; you got…an empty head with dust bunnies bouncing around like tiny tumble weeds.
I’ve had art teachers tell me to loosen up and relax. One instructed the class to hold pencils and charcoal sticks loosely over large sheets of paper and draw with our whole arm; moving the shoulder, elbow, wrist, and fingers. Really get into it. I think I should try that with writing. Loosen up and really get into it to avoid that brick wall that emerges from the dusty corners of my mind.
But sometimes even relaxation techniques do not work. What to do then? I set everything on the back burner to simmer. Yup! Just walk away; push my chair away from the computer, get up, and leave the room. This might sound like a coward’s way out and may appear as if I’ve given up but I’ve found it to work. It’s impossible to swim in the quicksand. I can’t even float in it.
As I run errands, do house chores, attend meetings, handle other jobs, there’s a little lonely grey cell in the imagination department tinkering with the story. Sometimes ideas and picture stories float to the logical side of the brain and that’s when I make note of them in a journal. This process is successful most of the time however it can be agonizingly slow. I can’t allow myself to panic. But if a dead line is looming, I do panic. But eventually, everything comes together. Perhaps if I wrote everyday instead of just occasionally, my mind might be better trained; keeping me out of the quicksand.