How Long Does Writer’s Block Last?

As a writer myself, I can relate to how frustrating it can be when there isn’t a good topic to write about or a good plot to follow. Sometimes we ask ourselves, ‘How long will I be in this state?’, and we find that the answer varies each time.

Several people have pitched in their opinions online ranging from a short moment to 7 years

  • My longest writer’s block lasted for a day. I was fatigued and helpless, but a good nap got me back on my feet.
  • Clarissa Wilson, a professional writer for 15 years and counting, says that she suffered from her last writer’s block for days.
  • Adria Tyger Lily Jones, who has been writing poetry and fiction since childhood, had writer’s block for seven years.
  • Mihira Voruganti said that the longest it lasted was for six months.
  • Of the 16 people who recounted their experiences on Quora, slightly more than 40 percent did not believe in writer’s block or claimed to not have suffered from it. The remaining percentage was evenly split between the periods of a few days, one to six months, and three to seven years.

Not everyone believed in writer's block including 

  • Stephen King said “Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” and also said “The scariest moment is always just before you start. After that, things can only get better.

One interesting thing to note is that many who responded online claimed to have never had writer’s block, or only had it for a fleeting moment.

  • They reframed the problem as part of the writing process, and hence one that is necessarily experienced before your next breakthrough.
  • They write rough drafts and know that they will write over it the next day, but they keep moving forward and not looking back.

So one can see that the length of writer’s block depends on how one perceives the problem– are you stuck, or are you trying too hard to perfect a paragraph that doesn’t need to be perfect? It is entirely independent of how experienced you are in writing, or the genre that you’re writing about.

  • The writers who experienced writer’s block for the shortest period maintained their momentum of writing throughout– as long as there was progress, regardless of its mediocrity, they passed the phase quickly and smoothly. They found that typing out a sloppily thought-through paragraph or starting from elsewhere in the plot and working backward gave them more inspiration than staring at their blinking cursor for hours.
  • It also depends on what kind of writer’s block you’re having. Is it a streak of laziness and procrastination? Or is it a lack of creativity? Each of these problems can be solved via different means and can be overcome psychologically with varying levels of difficulty. The difference in what one can define as ‘writer’s block’ is also why so many disagree with its existence. If the block was easy to solve, then it wasn’t a ‘block’.

Ultimately, how long your writer’s block lasts depends on how hard you work at it. Change your writing from third to first person. Go for a stroll. Take a break and get some sleep.

Or read an article about how long writer’s block lasts.

  • Hugh MacLeod, author of Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity, "Writer's block is just a symptom of feeling like you have nothing to say, combined with the rather weird idea that you should feel the need to say something."
  • Mark Twain said, "The secret of getting ahead is getting started."

Generally speaking, however, most bouts of writer’s block stem from one of three issues: perfectionism, exhaustion/burnout, and lack of direction (not knowing what to write about).

Overcoming Perfectionism-related Writer’s Block

Perfectionist-related writer’s block tends to last longer than other forms given perfectionists typically struggle for hours over what may appear minuscule details such as craftsmanship or choice of wordings/phrases. This in turn leads them into an endless cycle of writing and re-writing which ends up stalling progress. To address this specific type of blockage, try loosening up the standards you set for yourself while writing or break down assignments into smaller more manageable chunks instead. As an example; You could decide to finish drafting the body paragraph before turning your attention towards improving it later on. 

Overcoming Exhaustion/Burnout-related Writer’s Block

As writers are sometimes required to make gargantuan efforts in prolonged periods when motivation begins spiking downward – they are prone to developing burnout which subsequently leads them into getting blocked everywhere they turn due to mental exhaustion. To address this type of issue; take regular breaks throughout your working day and allow yourself some much-needed rest when necessary lest the panic from looming deadlines start taking hold – forcing ill-thought-out work upon yourself which would likely require multiple redrafts further down the line anyway thus increasing workload overall instead. It few not sound like much but those short rests will add up quickly enabling better focus later on!

Do you ever find yourself feeling frustrated in your professional life because you're failing to persuade people to your point of view? Sometimes, the best way to accomplish your goals is actually by taking a step back and using reverse psychology instead.

Using reverse psychology in workplaces can have its fair share of advantages if done tactfully and responsibly. It has been shown to be an effective strategy when trying to influence or convince others, which makes it a valuable tool for any workplace. In this article, we will explore how reverse psychology can be used effectively in a range of different scenarios in order to get ahead at work while maintaining good relationships with those around you.

Overcoming Lack Of Direction-related Writer’s Block

Perhaps one of the most common causes behind writer’s block; having too many ideas bouncing around yet being unable to settle on any particular direction quickly snowballing into an immobilizing ball of confusion can reflect poorly when attempting to convey messages via written works The best way to tackle this sort of situation would be by creating several different drafts across different topics then narrowing down thereafter till only the most optimal remains standing (if you will). Alternatively – If even such an approach proves unfruitful perhaps diverting attention elsewhere temporarily can help find inspiration that was hiding just beneath surface all along, for instance, helping yourself relax by engaging in conversations with peers & colleagues leads to interesting thoughts being shared back & forth offering new insights hopefully!!

In summary; if you're suffering from writer's block it could last anywhere from a few minutes if tackled early enough up until days depending on individual cases and what causing them to bear in mind that should worse come worst oftentimes allowing yourself rest I key for allowing ideas breathe and start flowing again. After all, creativity cannot come out of the box.

Besides writer's block, do you ever feel like no matter how hard you study, you can't seem to keep up with other students? Excessive academic pressure has become a major issue in today's competitive environment. In this article, we'll look at some of the common causes of academic pressure and explore ways in which we can address them with strategies and tips on staying motivated and managing stress levels.

Efforts have been made to get the information as accurate and updated as possible. If you found any incorrect information with credible source, please send it via the contact us form
Author: Rae-anne Leong
Rae-anne is a freelance writer born in Singapore. She has done research on and covered various topics, such as physical and mental health, and food. As someone who prefers the indoors to the outdoors, research and writing have become one of her most loved pastimes, and she believes in bringing, consolidating, and sharing knowledge with the world.
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