Monday, September 21, 2015

Five Benefits of Writer's Block

I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a post with a title like that. I’m also pretty sure I never expected to write one!

Some people don’t think “Writer’s Block” is a valid problem, and explain it as a lack of planning. This is a reasonable assertion, and no doubt true in many cases. However, even carefully-laid plans can be upset by circumstances, deadlines, or life in general.

Whether you get a blockage frequently or not, it seems a comfort that there can be positives to this state of mind, when words hold you hostage and won’t be wrangled into any kind of order. If you are in need of such encouragement, read on!

Five Benefits of Writer's Block

#1 – You realize you are human!
Of course you already knew that. But when the going is easy and our efforts reap quick rewards in the form of neat chapters and plot lines that roll out like carpets, we can get a little too comfortable to even understand the difficulties of others. Being stuck is humbling. And that’s always a good thing, right? ;)

#2 – Difficulty encourages growth
Challenge forces us to face the easy road and close the door on it. Though giving up may be tempting, we know if we take that route, we will have let the challenge defeat us. We will be disappointed with ourselves for abandoning an opportunity to persevere and grow.

(Note: I’m not saying that every project is worth pursuing, but rather that difficulty shouldn’t be the main factor in a decision to bow out.)

#3 – You can get new perspective
Being a writer who can’t write feels like being an athlete with a sprain – you simply cannot do the work you love. And if you have a deadline looming, or have scheduled a few clear days when you planned to add thousands to your word count, a struggle to progress can be downright demoralizing. Can it be even … crippling? That depends on you. Look up. Look around. At the end of the day, your terrible trouble would be a laughing matter for some people out there. We are so blessed when story trouble is the worst thing about our week.

#4 – You’re like a character in a book!
Sure, you still may not look like your favorite hero, or be able to sing opera any better than you did before. The fact is that we writers put our dear make-believe friends through tight places, and make them face hard things. That’s always an aspect of compelling fiction. Why? Because it’s an aspect of real life. So. If you’re struggling, you’re alive. Isn’t that reason to celebrate? :D

#5 – You are NOT alone.
If nothing else, Writer’s Block can drive you to your knees. You don’t have to face it alone. Ask the Lord for help, for inspiration, and for your project to be His. If that’s what the dreaded condition results in, it’s not such a bad thing after all.

Do you have any benefits to add? What do you think of the Amazon product below? I've often been tempted to buy it for writer friends ... but worried it might not be appreciated! :)

Caitlin R. Hedgcock is a Christian author who aspires to use storytelling for God’s glory. She lives with her family in England's picturesque county of Hertfordshire. Visit her website or Facebook page to find out more.


  1. Lovely article, Caitie! So true...I've been suffering from a seemingly endless attack of writer's block, though it may be due in part to the fact that I'm putting off writing at all because the block is so frustrating, but that's just bowing out, so maybe I need to think again! :) And I think the Writer's Block at the end is fantastic! What a marvelous idea!

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed the post! I hope you're out of your bout of writer's block now :)

  2. I think it can help you to realise how serious you are about writing - not just whether you want to do it full time (assuming you haven't yet made that step), but also just how much it means to you.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. That is a great observation! Thank you for sharing.


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