Sunday 1 March 2009

Overcoming Blogger's Block

It's annoying. Plenty of stuff going on in the world is begging to be commented on. There's a couple of posts bubbling under about "theoretical issues". But can I write? Nope.

It's strange. Sometimes the crap can't flow out of my fingers fast enough, even if there's nothing going on. I don't know. How do you overcome that sense of ennui that settles upon you when you get into your blogging interface? Do you just write any old crap? Do you procrastinate? (A bit of a problem if blogging is your preferred means of procrastination). Does a blog about blogger's block jump start your engine? Can Twitter and Facebook unplug your creative juices - when they're not
giving you cancer?

It would be interesting to hear what strategies other comrades employ to keep the block at bay.


Anonymous said...

I wish I knew! What puts me off is the sheer amount of time it takes - if I start a new post I can guarantee it'll take me an hour to finish it. I end up with fully-formed posts in the back of my mind (currently three or four, plus one actual draft that's been sitting there for a matter of months). Commenting on other people's blogs is much quicker, even though it's just as big a time-sink overall.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I don't think people always appreciate the time and mental effort they take. First you have to choose a theme, then you have to develop it, then you have to do some research to check your facts, and finally you write it. And if you don't get much of a response it can be a bit dispiriting. A cameo from me is overdue. I will try to address the situation.

Jon said...

I made the mistake of reading the comments under that Daily Mail article. Typical comment:

"I think the real issue people are forgetting here is that using Facebook MUST be having some effect on house prices?"

FFS. Anyway, I don't know the answer and I wish I did. Perhaps a change of topic is need, a new angle of approach. Perhaps we need to change what we're doing in the real world. I used to run a straight politics blog but set up my current one during the Respect split so as to have something less depressing to write about.

Anonymous said...

Writing? Not sure. It's more a sense of not having the energy rather than not having the raw material...

ModernityBlog said...


I think scanning the news, looking for something of interest, letting the moment take you, write a chunk, then tidy up later, is one way of doing.

and remember not every post has to be political or of academic merit, post what strikes you as amusing or of interest

Anonymous said...

My how timely. Maybe it’s the weather or the stars. But, I have just been wondering what happened to my muse. It just went quiet one day. For a couple of years I could not stop writing. I have a blog imbedded in an Italian American on line magazine. And I wrote for a local Italian American newsletter. And, I wrote for various H-net history cites. I just went on and on until one day I stopped.

I think the reason is that I realized that I was essentially talking to myself. The sound of one hand clapping. To me, writing is a voice in a dialogue – nay more: a meaningful dialogue. Simply getting responses to what I wrote was not enough.

How much would Shakespeare have written if he were alone on an island? Writing is a social phenomenon. Unless one is connected to a group (physical or virtual), writing is fairly meaningless. This is especially true of political writing.

And so…Mein Herr, perhaps you have stopped writing because of the paucity of meaningful responses to what you write. Just a thought.

Tommy V

Pamthropologist said...

I do, also, worry about gaps in my blog and, in a way, its funny that we do. I wonder if people who Twitter worry about interuptions in their flow....maybe its the metaphor of a flow. I guess my point is that it is all about the expectations and the pressure of meeting them. I noticed when I started that I wrote for myself and then I got kinda uber-conscious of "my audience". In time, I think I adjusted to the idea of what I was up to (although it still comes up) and it translated to not as much block as the self-consciousness wore off.

Having trouble finding time to post full, complete posts is another serious issue--as others have noted, that one is tough and, perhaps, underappreciated.

And being in a hurray and being incoherent is another. LOL.

Anonymous said...

I can almost always find something to rant about if I read enough news sites.

But sometimes even then, the words don't come out how they're meant to, usually when there's been a period of no comments on my blog.

I guess I'm not much of an example because there have been long periods of time when I haven't blogged, but at the moment I'm doing pretty well.

Anonymous said...

I find lager helps, though it means you spell things rong.

Also being very, very cross.

Lager and high levels of anger, that's it.

Owen said...

My blog is blocked! But its the !@#!@ thesis i'm trying to write which stalled it.

A couple weeks ago I decided to stop writing anything except my thesis, until I had "something".

Well it's been three weeks and I still have jack shit AND i haven't blogged a single thought I've had.

Looking for bad writing strategies? I've got them.


Boffy said...


You should ask that Sentinel guy. He has no problem writing the odd 15,000 words.

There again its all racist crap, so I don't suppose that requires much brain power.

Organized Rage. said...

There was a time when the only blocked I had to worry about was when I had taken to many purple hearts, those were the days. Barbs and speed mixed in a little purpley blue pill.

Hang on Phil, you have given me an idea to blog about, sorry cannot continue with my comment, I have a blog to write.

Phil said...

Mod, good thinking - et voila, three blogs on consecutive days where I've had to write very little. The irony is I'm very much unblocked now - I've just got to find the time to write!