This is weird. Never, ever in my life have I suffered from writer’s block. Quite the contrary, usually I write too much, and wind up having to hack and delete to get things down to a length that people can at least suffer through.
In high school, I was the one in the classroom that when the teacher said, “Write a 500 word essay on Does a Duck Have Lips” I would ask if it was OK if I took it to 1,000 words. My senior thesis advisor in college — who I had for Advanced Writing the previous semester — said, “Jay, it’s supposed to be 25 – 30 pages, please keep it under 40” (it came in at 39 pages, once I widened the margins past generally acceptable limits).
But for the past several days, the words have been difficult. Tonight they dried up completely. Normally I sit at the keyboard and words just fall out of my head faster than I can type. Oh, I have things to write about — real estate is a never ending source of material. There are typical client questions, terminology, even (ugh) statistics. I could write about the Fed cutting interest rates 50 basis points today. Actually is was a globally coordinated rate cut by six central banks — the Federal Reserve, European Central Bank, Bank of England and the central banks of Switzerland, Canada and Sweden all lowered rates by half a percent. Should make for scintillating reading.
But despite reading many stories about the rate cuts, I can’t seem to get out what I want to say about it.
Hence this mind-numbing, meandering sorry excuse for a post. Google “Writer’s Block” and you’ll get 3.3 million pages to read. But I don’t need to read, I need to write.
Therein lies part of my problem. I can’t explain it, but I’ve always needed to write. Yes, I write on this blog to get business, market and promote my business, to (hopefully) educate others, and to learn. But I also blog here because of this odd compulsion to put words on “paper”. Most people look at me like I have two heads when I say that. What can I say, it’s goofy, but it’s the way I am wired.
So when I can’t write, it feels….. like something is missing. Incomplete. There’s an unsatisfied urge. It’s almost like going hungry. If I weren’t all clogged up at the moment I could probably explain it better.
My lovely wife said, “Just take a day off. Walk away from the keyboard.” But I can’t. Well, I may be forced to because if I keep writing drivel like this the reader base may run away screaming and start seeking out sharp objects. Francy also said, “Don’t write about having writer’s block, it’s horribly boring”.
And she’s right about that!
These last 471 words (don’t obsess on word count!) took me almost an hour to write. Normally this would have taken 10 minutes. This is just a bit worrisome. It’s not normal. I’ve deleted more sentences than I’ve written which is totally abnormal for me. This post sucks, but it doesn’t suck as bad as sitting and staring at an empty screen.
If anyone has a tip or two about what has cured your writer’s block, I’m all ears. I did find two great posts by a couple of bloggers I respect immensely. Darren Rowse at Problogger wrote Battling Bloggers Block and Merlin Mann at 43 Folders penned Hack Your Way Out of Writer’s Block. They are both jammed with tips and ideas for breaking the block. We’ll try some of those over the next few days, attempt to not stress out too much, and assume the block and haze will lift sometime soon.
Thanks for bearing with me and sorry for clogging up your feed reader, email and/or browser while I write something.