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Louise Couper

April Newsletter

Writer’s Block: That dreaded state of inertia, of feeling that the last thing you want to do is sit and write – or indeed paint, or sculpt.  

A number of possible causes spring to mind: discouragement; extreme tiredness from illness or the loss of a friend or worry when a piece of work has been rejected; a sense that what you are doing is meaningless and brings you more pain than pleasure.  It is accompanied by a lack of enjoyment in writing, a loss of joy.

So, a possible diagnosis; a possible cure.  Don’t force yourself to do anything.  Focus instead on feeling the sadness of your loss, or discouragement.  There will come a time when you will get fed up with this, when you will want some sort of change.  That is a good sign, a sign you are recovering.  Take the opportunity to do something that offers the opportunity to write but with no pressure to do so.  I suggest a course.  You could choose one from the many on offer by the Irish Writers Centre.  You will spend time with other writers, become aware of their difficulties and feel less alone.

Re-read books you have enjoyed in the past; re-connect with the world of words.  Treat yourself to a journal and a nice pen.  Make a date with yourself: agree to meet you and the writer in you at a certain time every day, in a certain place – coffee shop, art gallery, hotel.  En route, think about any topic/event/opinion you may have about anything.  Soon as you sit down, you will put pen to paper and write about it.

Every writer and artist has fallow periods.  They are as important as the times which are prolific, part of the ebb and flow of a creative life.  Without winter, there would be no spring.  Believe and trust.  You are a child of nature.