The Tale of Writer’s Block

She noticed it one day when she picked up her pen. It sat on her hand and grinned, holding on tight with its little sharp claws and heavy, pudgy, gut. It was darker than her shadow, and as ugly as a bribe. No amount of asking nicely would make it leave her side. She enticed it with clever ideas, little stories and tidbits of cheer, but it merely bit down harder, and the venom of its fangs began to chase away every nice thing she used to believe about her work.

A little demon of her own, to plague her thoughts and sour her day; it laughed as it read any words that she wrote.

And she would crawl into herself and begin to take its mocking to heart. She even began to believe her hand was crippled, never to move again. Although she could dress her little demon, or hide it for a while, one false thought and it would dig a little deeper, bite a little harder, and laugh a little louder. It spoiled her stories. So many half-finished, discarded tales began to pile in her mind, never finding their way out, blocked by the little demon sitting on her hand.

Frustration built in her heavy heart. The demon created a dam of insecurity and doubt, shame and fear.

Then one day it burst. Perhaps she had sat idle too long. Perhaps she no longer noticed its laugh, or maybe her hand just grew strong enough to write and carry the demon along, regardless of its weight and claws and fangs and gut. For the ideas still flowed, and the dam was never all that strong. Writers have their moment, and the hero comes charging through, baring its banner of inspiration, and waving its silver pen in the air. The little demon hangs on, barely grasping your thumb.

The End… or is it?


Round of Words in 80 Days Status: 63 1/2


5 thoughts on “The Tale of Writer’s Block

  1. Sylvia Plath said that self doubt is creativity’s worst enemy. Self doubt often lies at the root of writer’s block, but it can also be as simple as not planning ahead and so getting stuck in our story–or the block can come from another aspect of our life. I suffered from work burnout after I worked three jobs for a few years. I thought there was something wrong with me because I couldn’t write. Turned out, I was just tired and needed a vacation! It took some time, but now the words are flowing.

    Great post! 🙂

    1. For me self-doubt used to occur after I would read all these great writers and novels. I stupidly compared myself to so many people. It took some time, but I learned not to compare, but to look to professional writers as inspiration. Thanks for the support btw, and I’m very happy your words are flowing!

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