Friday, 13 November 2009

Writers block, not always a bad thing

Realised a few days after starting this blog that it conflicts with my current main goal of writing a novel. I was hoping it could compliment it and maybe it will but the last fortnight I have suffered the dreaded writers block and am only now beginning to work through it.

Still, I have wanted a vehicle to give progress updates and so here goes...

(For a detailed look at my progress, check out the web page for my novel:

Goal 36 was to complete 50,000 words by 31st December this year. I'm now thinking that was just too ambitious and that by end January 2010 is more realistic.

The reality is that I have only written 1300 words in the last two weeks. Over a third of that today! If I have 30 writing days until the end of the year, I would need to write 429 words a day to meet my original goal. I may manage that but my problem this month has been that I've realised I can't continue writing unless my plot is mapped out in more detail. Quite simply, I've been worried the pace is too slow and the sections I've been writing are in danger of becoming disjointed.

And to get on track, I've needed to spend more time thinking and less writing. And, I suspect for the next month or two, I'm going to continue to need to spend time plotting and developing the story line in detail if I'm going to achieve my other goals of writing a novel that will be enjoyable to read.

Verbalising so many goals for this novel has forced me to think whether I am working towards them or not. Until I published my 100 goals, I had been aware that I was not satisfied with my daily word targets but uncertain what to do about it. Now I feel I have set a completely different type of goal which has forced me to take a step back and examine why I want to write this novel and think about what sort of novel I want it to be. Not to say these things had not crossed my mind before but I am now beginning to place them as higher priorities and hope this will be a better read for it.


  1. One thing's for sure, Mark, there's certainly more to being an author than meets the eye! I have heard about the "dreaded" writer's block but did not fully realise what it really meant until reading your blog. I must say that you seem to be handling the situation very well for you have started penning again which I would think is the toughest hurdle. Getting started again appears to be the key.

    Keep truckin', my friend!

  2. Sounds like you're doing the right thing - no point writing lots of words if they don't make for a good novel!