Posted by: oneyearbook | April 23, 2009


Sorry I haven’t been blogging too much lately. First we went away for the weekend – a good trip, we went here and saw this (I can’t watch movies anymore without thinking immediately of how they fit – or don’t – with a standard three-act literary structure; I used to have a writing teacher who really liked to use films as a demonstration of that sort of structural thing, and while at the time I always wanted more examples from books, I can see her point now because it’s a lot easier to spot such a thing in a movie, and therefore easier to pick up and engage with the concept) and of course we made a visit here. We got our ride back to the Island on one of the new breed of ferries – I’d been aboard one before, for work, but never actually crossed the Strait on one, and while the cafeteria being right up by the windows is nice, the really impressive thing is how quiet they are. I felt like we were in a library, having to speak in hushed tones, in order not to pop the bubble of silence.

And then this week I’ve just been mired in the book, slogging through quicksand. Not that things aren’t getting done – I refuse to bow to the god of writer’s block – but I’m alternately disgusted with the work I’m doing or sick with the thought of how much pure word poundage is still to come before even the first draft is committed to the page. Today I had a nasty thought: if I’m not sure that I’m half done, the first draft could be as much as 600 pages long. That’s heavy stuff. Where is it all going to? Has anything even happened in this book? I’m overwhelmed with bookistential angst.

Anyway here’s a link to a funny interview with Gary Shteyngart – it’s an old link but I found it among my bookmarks today and laughed all over again. “I don’t have it,” he says of writer’s block. “Often what I write is crap, so that’s not writer’s block, that’s writer’s crap. You know what I do? I take long showers, sometimes three hours long. It’s really helpful.”

This week I’m really hearing him about the writer’s crap.



  1. I wonder what’s more to be feared; writer’s block or crap? I would side with crap, as one would not be able to decern the difference of what was and wasn’t.


    • I definitely fear writer’s block more. At least if I write some crap I can eventually turn it into something better; but if I’m not writing anything at all, I have nothing to work with. Before starting this project I was quite afraid that I would sit down each day and absolutely nothing would happen. I’m very glad to be sitting down and spewing stuff out, even if some of it is just terrible.

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