Springingtiger's Blog


Writer’s Block – Commitment and Context.

As I left the cinema this lunchtime, I bumped into my friend Charlie Russell and walked him along to his work. As we walked we talked and the conversation turned to writing. Charlie told me that when faced with writer’s block Dan Brown hands upside down, it led me to the contemplation of writer’s block.

As you may know, I have committed to posting to my blog every day this year, so the subject of writer’s block is of some interest to me. There were days at the start when writing was a real struggle and for those writing something specific like a book or commissioned article, I can appreciate writer’s block is a real problem. I have the freedom to write what I choose and after a while it occurred to me that every day something happens, all that remains is to write about it. If one pays attention there is always something about which to write, all that one has to do is notice it. Of course what draws one’s attention may not be the subject about which one writes, it is sufficient that it calls one’s attention to something about which one can write. Unfortunately the events of one’s daily life may be irrelevant to that about which a writer needs to write, but at least they will be writing, and writing, any writing, may be sufficient to start the ideas flowing again. It goes without saying that any writing will require editing, if that editing is to remove irrelevant content that stimulated a flow of ideas, so much the better. Anyone who has a commitment to something will, on occasion, face obstacles, sometimes the obstacle is called “writer’s block”, but everyone has their blocks.

My commitment is to post to my blog every day, it is not to post rubbish,although there are days when I am not entirely satisfied with my output. There is no point in my writing something that is of no use to readers, so contained in my commitment is the further commitment to provide value. I write primarily for myself, but there is no satisfaction in worthless content; time constraints may prevent me fully editing what I write, but at least the content should have value, my values will not allow it to be otherwise. I believe I may have said in a previous post that a commitment that does not have one’s values as its foundation will not be compelling. My commitment is to write, someone else’s may be to feed school children in Africa or, perhaps, to educate their own children. A person’s real commitment creates the context in which they live and act. I have said it before, and it remains true that commitment is not something one has, it is who one is. Commitment will always bring obstructions, but it will also provide the power to get past the obstruction.

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