Reviews and Essays

Writing to Combat Writer’s Block?

Writing Confessions

There’s a reason I post so much flash and micro fiction — as much as I’m passionate about writing, I am painfully bad at follow through. Here are my confessions:

  1. I get too excited by new ideas and jump ship like my life depends on it
  2. As a technical writer, I’m trained to be concise, which it makes it very difficult to write longer pieces
  3. When I get deep into a manuscript and start to feel like it might be The One, I get overwhelmed by the pressure



In a nutshell, I’m a serial story starter who gets overwhelmed easily. It’s a problem.

But here’s what I’m doing about it…



When I get overwhelmed in my every day life and need to escape, I read. When I REALLY need to escape, I read cozy mysteries. They’re silly, they’re fun (if somewhat murder-y), and they shut off the part of my brain that worries about, well, EVERYTHING.

cozy mysteries r&b books

So, I’m wondering if I can apply this to my particular brand of writer’s block, which is really just me feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of putting my name on something that I want to be ABSOLUTELY perfect.

To test my theory, I am putting aside all of my very serious and personal manuscripts and letting myself spend an indeterminate amount of time writing a cozy paranormal mystery. That’s all the goodness of a small town murder mystery with the added bonus of a paranormal element (often, it’s that our fierce female MC is also a witch). It’s just outside of my comfort zone, but also might be just what I need. There’s zero pressure because a conceit of the genre is that it’s not to be taken seriously… at all.

I mean… just look at these titles!

cozy paranormal display

So far, it’s working! In less than a week, I’ve written over 10, 000 words and yet it’s been like a vacation for my brain. More to the point, I’ve been in better spirits and have had less anxiety overall. That’s not nothing!

I hope it continues to be this fun and effective. And who knows, maybe one day I’ll wake up completely unblocked on a previous piece 🙂

In the meantime, I’m looking forward to a much darker publication I have in an upcoming fairytale anthology. Release Date is TBA, but I’ll keep you all posted!

4 thoughts on “Writing to Combat Writer’s Block?”

    1. I know, right?! They crack me up. Currently reading one called Crochet and Cauldrons lol
      I’m flying through it and feeling energized. It helps that it’s a really formulaic process and I plotted out each major turning point and made notes about which tropes I wanted to keep and which I wanted to subvert (and how). It feels a bit like gamified writing, actually lol

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Damn. I’ve a totally different technique (without professional help). I think about a particular even and how I’m going to build it up with the support of this character (I don’t plan). I write the chapter and suddenly the whole plot changes. You don’t know how, or when, but it has happened 😂
        I can’t be organised. I seriously can’t 😂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That’s sort of what I’ve done in the past with all my unfinished manuscripts. I try to plot but then I get writing and everything changes. That this genre has such an ingrained formula attached is making the organization much easier. Plus, it is a mystery… so I have to make sense all my plot twists will come together, hence planning in advance! Lol

          Liked by 1 person

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