Monday, November 21, 2011

Mental Blocks

When I do revisions on my manuscripts, I tend to hit a mental block toward the very end, with only a few hours of work left to go. I'm in such a place right now. I know exactly what I need to do to fix the manuscript (so it's not technically "writer's block"), but no matter how hard I try I can't seem to make myself complete those last 3-4 hours.

The human brain is interesting, to say the least. Obviously I want more than anything to have a book published. One might therefore assume that I want more than anything to finish my book, so I can send it off to my editor. But I can't. My brain wants it, but my body won't respond, and I can't focus long enough to do what I need to do. This happens with every single book I revise. Those last few hours are agonizing, as if my fingers have grown too heavy to move.

I'm going to go out on a limb here and assume that most writers encounter mental blocks at one point or another. How about you guys? Are there specific times when you feel blocked, or does it happen at random? Do you ever feel like you can't write even though you know exactly what needs to happen in your story? How do you deal with mental block?

I've spent the past two weeks trying to finish up what should've taken me less than a day. What's wrong with me?


  1. You're scared. You're scared you will do everything you can and it won't be enough. Or, at least, that's why I always stop before it's perfect. Because my "good" can fail, but if my best fails, I'm a failure. If that makes sense.

    I will send you chocolate and thoughts of success :)

  2. I have to agree with Taryn. It's the last step before surrendering your work over to another. It's why those last few hours are the longest.

    No worries. You're going to be fine. :)

  3. I'm with you! I only have a few chapters of my own final edits left. I know exactly what needs to happen. But it's been sitting on my computer for about three months now (yeah, I moved across the country during that time, but still...). Must. Finish. Book.