Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Beating #Writer’sBlock with a Good #Book by Mackenzie Crowne



Writer’s Block. Gah! Just typing the phrase makes my skin crawl — a reaction I’m sure makes perfect sense to those for whom writing is compulsory. It is for me and finding myself frozen in front of the keyboard without a clue as to why the words won’t come is a nasty, horrible, utterly frustrating state of affairs. Unfortunately, I’m not a novice when it comes to the phenomenon, having found myself staring at a blank screen a number of times over the years. Yet, knowing I’ll eventually make it through to the other side is of little help while I’m waiting. I want to write. I NEED to write and none of the countless tricks I’ve used in the past to overcome this painful lack of creativity seem to be working.

So, I’ve decided to go back to the beginning. Back to those stories that first touched my heart and lured me into the world of romance when I was little more than a girl. Back to those paperbacks that claim a permanent place on my re-read shelf. Here’s the plan: For the next seven days, I will be spending my free time with some of my all-time favorite characters — old friends I’ve neglected for far too long. I plan to immerse myself in sweeping adventures that came from the creative and talented minds of none other than Linda Howard, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Johanna Lindsey, Nora Roberts and Elizabeth Lowell to name a few. I’m talking classic romance, written in the 70s and 80s before I’d ever heard of such things as plot development, linear vs non-linear, character arcs, head-hops and dialog tags.

With a little luck, these old friends will remind me of why I started writing romance in the first place, and if not, who cares? Re-reading a favorite romance used to be one of my most enjoyable ways to pass an afternoon. It’s time I got back to that bygone pleasure. I’ll let you know how the plan works out, but in the meantime, what about you? Do you ever re-read or do those new adventures waiting to be experienced claim your heart?

When Mac isn’t bashing her head against the keyboard and cursing the dreaded writer’s block, she spends her time providing happily-ever-afters for her sassy characters like Rylee Pierce, heroine of


9 comments:

RE Mullins said...

A timely post as I've been spinning my wheels recently. When my story stalls, I get on the riding mower. It kills 2 with 1 stone. I get the lawn mowed and it creates an enforced sitting to think time. If that doesn't shake something loose, I go back to the beginning of my story and start to edit. Also 2 for 1 as I improve the first chapters and by the time I reach where I'm stuck the story has often come together for me.

Jannine Gallant said...

I used to revisit favorite books all the time. Lately, I'm challenged to get anything read. I'm also hard put not to want to edit those oldies but goodies when I do pick them up. I can't seem to enjoy them the way I used to before I knew so much about what we should and shouldn't do... LOL

Vonnie Davis said...

I have a few oldies I reread every year. It's hard to ignore some of the things they did back then--head hop and said tags galore--but I love the characters and the storyline. Right now, though, I can't even bring myself to read at bedtime like I've done for years. I'm having enough trouble getting my creative juices flowing again, but I'll get there. You will too. I expect you'll rebound with a sweet flurry of ideas scrambling through your mind.

Brenda Whiteside said...

I've never had writer's block so I don't know what I'd do to get the juices flowing again. I'd probably read some old favorite in the romantic suspense genre.

Margo Hoornstra said...

Writer’s block, per se, hasn’t been a real issue for me, since my ‘real’ job demanded a lot of ‘right now’ writing of me. I do, however, hem and haw and procrastinate when I’m starting a new project. It’s always wonderful, though, to re-read some of the classics. Kathleen Woodiwiss comes to mind. To remember the love of words that got all of us into this ‘I have to write or what’s the use of being’ boat we all seem to be in. And happily so.

Andrea Downing said...

Funny you should mention this. Just the other day I was on Amazon searching for some of my young adulthood favorites: Daddy Longlegs and Our Hearts Were Young and Gay, which were classics by the time I got to them but seem to have gone by the by. Nothing like an old favorite to get the juices flowing, Mac.

Diane Burton said...

Great company you'll be keeping, Mac. I love the stories those authors wrote. Immersing yourself in fine writing can give you hope for your WIP. Good luck!

Leah St. James said...

I do the same, Mac! Nothing like a good book to stir the creative juices. You named some of my all-time favorite romance authors, too! I'm sure you'll rediscover your inspiration quickly!

Rolynn Anderson said...

Well, Mac, we must be sisters. I've been reading the 'greats' - Linda Howard, Karin Slaughter, and J.D. Robb lately, to get revved for the game. I've also been reading books I wrote years ago, realizing these are stories I still want to tell. But I'll tell them better than when I first wrote them...promise :-)