Friday, July 30, 2010

Writer's Block, What to Do?

© 2010 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
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Deadfalls, Snags, and Cliff Faces

I think I've posted this at least a couple of times before as either a guest post or two, and maybe right here on TROC. But Kristine, the Queen Bee at OBS, has experienced the dreaded writer's block. Something that aflicts all of us at times. Her post, The Return of the Lady that Writes Good, discusses the travails of both way too much to do, and too little time to do it in! ot only that, but I also found a new blog for me, "I Don't Wear Pink Camo to the Woods," and in the "Popular Posts" link I found "10 Things Learned Through My First 100 Posts." I think it fits right in with the general theme of writing on your blog. So without anymore delay, let's delve into getting that story written!

Writing is a lot like hunting. You slog your way through swamps and morass, climb gumbo slick clay hills and razor sharp talus slides, you freeze your rear off and burn your shins, all to collect what is due you for the hard work. Patience, perseverance and opportunity have their payoffs.

Occasionally even after all the hard work, an elusive deer or a cagey turkey can give you the slip. Out of the corner of you eye you see a ghost flit by, and you know that was your trophy. What can you do? Go back to camp, recollect yourself, and go back out and do it again.

have you ever sat in front of the keyboard with a great idea you wanted to share, only to find that the idea flits away like an autumn leaf? (Just like that eight point last year. Remember that?) You know what it is that you want to say, where you want to go, but all of a sudden you lose the track. What do you do?

If you’re like me, you cuss up a storm, and figure out something else to write about. Sometimes I can hold onto the thinnest of tendrils and drag the storyline kickin’ and screamin’ back into the synapses that lost it in the first place. Occasionally I’m at a dead loss. (Sort of like the time I fell asleep on the No. 7 from Manhattan to Flushing.) Doesn’t happen to frequently mind you; when you’re as A.D.D. as I am, something else always pops up to distract you.

“Ok," you say, "I have an idea what do I do now?”

I’m glad you asked.

Once the initial thought is roped and throttled into submission, you have to put it on paper. Create a starting point and work your way through the introduction first. Set the stage for what is to come. Think of it as a good bartender. He sets the mood and tone for the whole dining experience. I like to be somewhat witty. Usually I have to rework it a few times before it is even remotely amusing or even eye catching.

Usually if you can get through the introduction, the rest just writes itself. If you are so excited that you just can’t put it into words, then just write down the action words that are moving you. You can always add nouns, pronouns, verbs, punctuation, and all that grammar stuff later!

But maybe your masterpiece has hit a dead end, or better said, a bend in the road where you just can’t see what’s right around the corner. Your best bet is to approach the bend slowly and carefully. Who knows what might be waiting for you there! Coax the story out of the bend. Tell yourself the story, then find the words to write it. Always be careful at this point, many people are misdiagnosed as crazy for mumbling to themselves, so try to keep it to an inner monologue.

You might have to bypass that area and go right to the end, and then backtrack your way to where you left off. I find that to be a particularly good way to outfox a cagey essay.

Remember that most of the time the story is already there. The hardest part is just getting it told!

Albert A Rasch
Member: Kandahar Tent Club
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles


Anonymous said...

I really hate writer's block..................................................

Whitetail Woods Blog / Muzzleloader Testing

murphyfish said...

now if I were a writer then just maybe I'd get a block or two! Lucky then that I just type at what appeals and what drives me at the time without trying to look to deep for meaning or sense.
Good advice here though Albert and worthy of posting, thanks for sharing.

Ben G. said...

Albert, I don't enjoy writers block but when I get it I typically just sit down with some paper and a pen and write what ever comes to mind hunting or non hunting related. Later I sort throught them and pick the few that really grab me. Some times I sort through my past posts to see if I can expand on any of them.