The Day Jack Suffered From Writer’s Block

They didn’t believe the day would come when Jack, captain of the mighty sailing ship “TheJackB” would succumb to writer’s block. It seemed virtually impossible that such a day would come.

It wasn’t just because he said it never happened but because they had never seen it happen. That crazy man could produce content at a ridiculous pace that made people wonder what the hell was going on with him.

Some whispered that he had made a deal with the devil and that in return for his soul he was granted immunity from the curse of the empty page. Others suggested that it wasn’t that at all. They said that Jack had gained the ire and enmity of a gypsy. They said the gypsy had laid multiple curses down upon him and that was why he was so restless.

They said that he ran four other blogs besides his main one and that he almost never slept. They said that some times people would find him passed out, face down upon his keyboard.

Some of those who claimed to know him best said that none of those things were true. They said many years before he had been the Dread Pirate Roberts and that he had sailed around the world.

300px Tarangini The Day Jack Suffered From Writers Block

The Indian barque Tarangini passing under the Newport Bridge — Narragansett Bay, RI, USA — folowed by the Prince William and Picton Castle. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

They said that in a time that once was and on an island that can’t be found he fought with the Shaman of the tribe that lived there. They said it wasn’t because he tried to plunder the riches of the island. They hadn’t stopped there to do more than find fresh water and pick some fruit.

The natives had attacked the crew, killing most and capturing many. Jack couldn’t let that go. He had an obligation to his crew and a reputation to uphold. No one took on the Dread Pirate Roberts with impunity.

So he led a daring rescue mission in which he saved many lives and created a deeper bond with the men who sailed with him. Those who came back described the final battle between Jack and the Shaman as having been the sort of tale that people wouldn’t believe. Even those who witnessed it wondered what was real and what was illusion.

They said that Jack wanted to spare the life of the Shaman but there was no way to do so without inviting severe risk to himself and the crew. Just before he died the Shaman screamed and flames shot from his eyes. They couldn’t understand what he was saying, but it was clear that it wasn’t a blessing.

Later on Jack refused to speak about the battle. All he would say was that there was a price to be paid for his actions and he was willing to pay it.

Stop Talking About Yourself In The Third Person

During the past couple of days I have written close to 6,000 words or so. The content has just been flowing from my fingertips and I am feeling a bit spent.

To be fair some of what I have been working on includes material that I had been saving for such an occasion so I didn’t create everything from scratch but I did spend a decent chunk of time trying to weave it all together into something that didn’t resemble a patchwork quilt.

One of the reasons I save my drafts is that I often find ways to use them later on. Here is a partial list of some of the posts that are sitting in my drafts folder:

  • It Is The Thought That Counts
  • What Are Your Priorities?
  • The Sins Of The Father
  • The Call Of The Hierophant
  • Three Generations of Men and A Movie
  • The Family Dinner
  • The Relationship Between Father’s Day, Marketers and Storytellers
  • Don’t Put The Cart Before The Horse
  • Meet Me In The Echoes Of The Future
  • A Ten Dollar Cup of Coffee
  • Where Is Your Focus?

I have a bunch of tricks that I use to keep my mind clear and my pencil sharp. These silly stories like the one above or the fictional battle at Starbucks are among my favorites. Those stories are fun to write because I don’t rely upon them to pay the bills.

They are what I use to stretch my writing muscles. It is like a warm up for me.

Sometimes I like to roll through the blog and read old posts and see if they inspire me. There isn’t any rhyme or reason to it, I just grab them and run. For example here are a bunch that I just stumbled onto again:

What Was The Point Of This Post?

Contrary to popular belief, not every post has to have a point. Sometimes it is fun to just write with reckless abandon and see where you end up. If it would make you feel better the point of this post was to share a few thoughts about writer’s block and how to deal with it.

I don’t suffer from it because I don’t believe in it. We can talk about it later, but if you train yourself to look at writing and the world in a different way you find it doesn’t exist.

That doesn’t mean that you will never question the quality of your work because you will. Every good writer has more than a few moments where they look at their content and wonder if a team of drunk monkeys could produce something better, but that is a topic for a different day.

What do you think?

Linked up with Dude Write Six.

 The Day Jack Suffered From Writers Block
87 comments
YoungmanBrown
YoungmanBrown

I can especially relate to this post because I just wrote something about all of the drafts that I start and how they are really piling up.

 

I will publish it when I get around to finishing it...

YoungmanBrown
YoungmanBrown

I can especially relate to this post because I just wrote something about all of the drafts that I start and how they are really piling up.   I will publish it when I get around to finishing it...

WantToBWriter
WantToBWriter

The best cure for writers block is... well... writing. Anything. And you have done a fine job here as an example.

 

Nice job!

 

Michael A. Walker

Defying Procrastination

WantToBWriter
WantToBWriter

The best cure for writers block is... well... writing. Anything. And you have done a fine job here as an example.   Nice job!   Michael A. Walker Defying Procrastination

workingdan
workingdan

Dan don't suffer from writer's blog. Dan would suffer from excessive idea syndrome. He has an abundance of brilliant writing swimming around in his head it makes it difficult to stay on topic because it all wants to spew forth at once.

 

Unfortunately, Dan has very little time to sit down and write so many of his brilliant ideas fade away with time because he didn't think to make a note of topic choices.

workingdan
workingdan

Dan don't suffer from writer's blog. Dan would suffer from excessive idea syndrome. He has an abundance of brilliant writing swimming around in his head it makes it difficult to stay on topic because it all wants to spew forth at once.   Unfortunately, Dan has very little time to sit down and write so many of his brilliant ideas fade away with time because he didn't think to make a note of topic choices.

P.J.
P.J.

I love writing with reckless abandonment sometimes. It's a great way to just throw some thoughts into the wind and hope they stick somewhere.

P.J.
P.J.

I love writing with reckless abandonment sometimes. It's a great way to just throw some thoughts into the wind and hope they stick somewhere.

Jens-Petter Berget
Jens-Petter Berget

Hi Jack, I have been thinking about how you manage to come up with so many awesome articles and still be working and sleeping :) Do you write using one device and one program only, or do you write on everything ?

Latest blog post: Intervju med Isabel Vika

Jens
Jens

Hi Jack, I have been thinking about how you manage to come up with so many awesome articles and still be working and sleeping :) Do you write using one device and one program only, or do you write on everything ?

JoeDeGiorgio
JoeDeGiorgio

Would "Writer's Hesitance" be the same as writer's block? Because it blocks me from publishing. The "oh shit, I don't know if that's good enough to go out there".... Just curious.

JoeDeGiorgio
JoeDeGiorgio

Would "Writer's Hesitance" be the same as writer's block? Because it blocks me from publishing. The "oh shit, I don't know if that's good enough to go out there".... Just curious.

rdopping
rdopping

I am outside and it is starting to rain. Some of those monkeys are my friends.

My Own Private Idaho
My Own Private Idaho

I'm completely gleaning onto the wrong point here, but I think staving off writers block is as easy as referring to yourself in the third person.

 

Brandon likes, and Brandon will try to keep on keepin on.

My Own Private Idaho
My Own Private Idaho

I'm completely gleaning onto the wrong point here, but I think staving off writers block is as easy as referring to yourself in the third person.   Brandon likes, and Brandon will try to keep on keepin on.

wilyguy
wilyguy

Great post. I like me some rambling goodness now and again. I don't believe in the writers block either. I also don't have the pressure of a writers on to contend with. I keep lots of drafts as well, some a mere title, others with a framework. Sometimes I patch them into my Half-Vast Ideas series. I'm chuckling at the "HELLO, My name is Inigo, err Dread Pirate Roberts, you killed my father, err crew, prepare to die" WG

wilyguy
wilyguy

Great post. I like me some rambling goodness now and again. I don't believe in the writers block either. I also don't have the pressure of a writers on to contend with. I keep lots of drafts as well, some a mere title, others with a framework. Sometimes I patch them into my Half-Vast Ideas series. I'm chuckling at the "HELLO, My name is Inigo, err Dread Pirate Roberts, you killed my father, err crew, prepare to die" WG

KDillabough
KDillabough

I like reckless abandon and drunk monkeys:) Cheers! Kaarina

KDillabough
KDillabough

I like reckless abandon and drunk monkeys:) Cheers! Kaarina

BloggerFather
BloggerFather

I suffered (experienced is probably a better word) a writer's block with my previous blog, so I stopped writing that blog. I just needed a direction and my blog now has a small enough focus to always make sure I have stuff to write about. And when the day comes when writing about fatherhood doesn't make sense anymore, I'll start my celebrity gossip blog!

Hajra
Hajra

I have writers block like every other day. Not because I have run out of ideas, but because I feel what I have written doesn't make sense and go ahead and erase it and then re write and the cycle continues. I just need to believe much more in my work and go ahead with it; rather than revolving too much around the same issue... 

Hajra
Hajra

I have writers block like every other day. Not because I have run out of ideas, but because I feel what I have written doesn't make sense and go ahead and erase it and then re write and the cycle continues. I just need to believe much more in my work and go ahead with it; rather than revolving too much around the same issue... 

Lori
Lori

Hi Jack.

LOL: a team of drunk monkeys could produce something better.

I don't know if I've suffered from writer's block and I didn't believe for a second that you had! Sometimes I think I'll run out of life topics. I mean, the big ones got covered in the firs 1.5 year, but then the next day I'll draft out two or three. I think, like you, I'll believe writer's block is a figment of somebody's imagination!

Lori

 

Lori
Lori

Hi Jack. LOL: a team of drunk monkeys could produce something better. I don't know if I've suffered from writer's block and I didn't believe for a second that you had! Sometimes I think I'll run out of life topics. I mean, the big ones got covered in the firs 1.5 year, but then the next day I'll draft out two or three. I think, like you, I'll believe writer's block is a figment of somebody's imagination! Lori  

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @YoungmanBrown Come on man, finish that bad boy. Some of us are tired of waiting for it.

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @WantToBWriter Hi Michael,   Can't beat it unless you play the game, right. I figure write, write and write some more. It gets easier.

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

 @workingdan Dan might want to start taking notes, perhaps he could carry a Sharpie and post-its that he could use whenever an idea forms. Maybe he could write it down and then place the post-it on his sleeve. Could be quite effective, never know. 

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @workingdan Dan might want to start taking notes, perhaps he could carry a Sharpie and post-its that he could use whenever an idea forms. Maybe he could write it down and then place the post-it on his sleeve. Could be quite effective, never know. 

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @P.J. It is a hell of a lot of fun. It is learning by doing and it can be very effective.

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

 @Jens 

Hi Jens,

 

I do 99% of my writing at the computer. I compose on the fly and just write with reckless abandon.

 

However when the situation "requires" I sometimes compose on my phone or on a pad of paper. 

 

One of the things I have going for me is that I don't give in as easily as others do to the fear that my work isn't good enough. Clearly there are posts that are good but there are more than a few that aren't great.

 

The thing to remember is that sometimes we can be harder on ourselves than our readers are. That doesn't mean we shouldn't push to do our best but sometimes what we think is inferior really isn't.

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @Jens  Hi Jens,   I do 99% of my writing at the computer. I compose on the fly and just write with reckless abandon.   However when the situation "requires" I sometimes compose on my phone or on a pad of paper.    One of the things I have going for me is that I don't give in as easily as others do to the fear that my work isn't good enough. Clearly there are posts that are good but there are more than a few that aren't great.   The thing to remember is that sometimes we can be harder on ourselves than our readers are. That doesn't mean we shouldn't push to do our best but sometimes what we think is inferior really isn't.

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @JoeDeGiorgio If it prevents you from pressing publish I would say yes. 

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @rdopping A good monkey can make for a great friend, or so I have heard.

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @My Own Private Idaho    Jack thinks Brandon is on to something and Jack agrees.

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

 @wilyguy 

 

Drafts are really useful.I think of them as being like spare parts for my car. You never know when a part might break and you can simply swap out one for the other.

 

The Princess Bride is a movie that amazes me for a million different reasons. There is something so cool about being able to use it as a touchstone for so many different people.

 

Over time I have found that it serves as a good tool to determine if I will get along with people. If they like the movie we're good, but if they don't it is a good indication they have no sense of humor and are heartless. ;)

 

Good to see you WG, hope your weekend was fun.

Latest blog post: The Birthday Girl

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @wilyguy    Drafts are really useful.I think of them as being like spare parts for my car. You never know when a part might break and you can simply swap out one for the other.   The Princess Bride is a movie that amazes me for a million different reasons. There is something so cool about being able to use it as a touchstone for so many different people.   Over time I have found that it serves as a good tool to determine if I will get along with people. If they like the movie we're good, but if they don't it is a good indication they have no sense of humor and are heartless. ;)   Good to see you WG, hope your weekend was fun.

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

 @KDillabough Drunk monkeys can be dangerous, not that I know anything about that. ;)

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @KDillabough Drunk monkeys can be dangerous, not that I know anything about that. ;)

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

@BloggerFather You do a good job of putting out a steady stream of content. It is one of the things I appreciate about your blog, always something to read.

 

But the celebrity gossip blog, now that could be fun. ;)

TheJackB
TheJackB

@BloggerFather You do a good job of putting out a steady stream of content. It is one of the things I appreciate about your blog, always something to read.   But the celebrity gossip blog, now that could be fun. ;)

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

 @Hajra  I hear that same voice inside my head, the one that says what we write isn't worth the time it takes to put it on paper.

The best advice I have, unsolicited as it may be, is to ignore it. Sometimes you'll come up with something fabulous and sometimes it will fall short. But writing does improve with practice and the more we do it the better we become.

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @Hajra  I hear that same voice inside my head, the one that says what we write isn't worth the time it takes to put it on paper. The best advice I have, unsolicited as it may be, is to ignore it. Sometimes you'll come up with something fabulous and sometimes it will fall short. But writing does improve with practice and the more we do it the better we become.

TheJackB
TheJackB moderator

 @Lori I think you will continue to find lots of topics to write/discuss. That is because Almost every one of them is something that could be broken into multiple pieces.

 

Not to mention that sometimes life experiences impact our thoughts and ideas so it is sometimes worth revisiting a topic to see where people are at.

TheJackB
TheJackB

 @Lori I think you will continue to find lots of topics to write/discuss. That is because Almost every one of them is something that could be broken into multiple pieces.   Not to mention that sometimes life experiences impact our thoughts and ideas so it is sometimes worth revisiting a topic to see where people are at.