We’ve all heard of writer’s block – the inability of a writer to write or to continue writing. There was – and probably still is – something like a small industry dedicated to teaching you how to overcome a bout of it, and those who suffer or have suffered from it have plenty to say about how horrible it is. Though most of the quotes on this topic you find online are of the more bracing variety.
I’m not sure I ever suffered from writer’s block as such, though there have been occasions when I announced, to myself if to no one else, that I was giving up writing. It never seemed to last very long: if I didn’t find myself at least composing a rant in response to some sort of online idiocy and then thinking, hang on, this is an article, I might find a fictional character wandering into a corner of my mind and taking up residency.
For quite a few months, though, I seem to have had a bout of what I could only describe as editor’s block. Part of it might have been due to repeated technical traumas – the succession of flash drives that suddenly refused to admit they held any files, and certainly weren’t hiding the lovingly-corrected short stories I had just been working on; the laptop i had stuck the completed files on in order to guard against any more flash drives eating them, which then proceeded to expire in turn beyond all fixing…
It almost certainly started with a feeling of ‘Gaah, don’t want to do all that work yet again, I’ll think of a way to retrieve it’ and then somehow the weeks went by, and I neither fixed the tech nor redid the work, and I started to feel a little haunted by the whole business. I generally like editing. It feeds my ego and makes me feel all powerful. But when I have to do something, I know I have to do it and yet somehow I’m not doing it, then that isn’t a nice place to be. I spent quite a few months with a face like this cat every time editing or stories or anthologies were mentioned..
But for some unknown reason, the trouble seems to have vanished as mysteriously as it arrived, and the project is almost finished.
If you get a dose at any point, my sympathies – and remember that none of this shit lasts forever.