It happened just after our move to the UK, when I was surrounded by a hype of activities and the adrenaline of a new arrival to a massive city that I suddenly felt a lull. It was as if my mind was sucked clean of creativity and I hit that dreaded wall of Writer’s Block.
Stuck in a Rut
Thinking it was just a phase, I stopped serious writing for a month, waiting for the juices to come back to me, expecting that after a rest it’ll just flow like it did before.
It didn’t. I was stuck and going nowhere. Despite regular travel I couldn’t come up with new ideas and my pitches to editors were dull and unoriginal, and as a result, my articles remain stale in my hard drive collecting virtual dust.
I didn’t want to appear as a failure to my writing peers, so I didn’t talk about it, pretending everything was still hunky-dory, until one day I opened up to a friend and realised that I had been bottled in my own thoughts for a little too long that I’ve forgotten the directions.
Writers Need Friends
Many of us are made to believe that writing is a solitary exercise, thinking that if we just close the door behind us and clear of all the distractions, we’ll be able to produce that ultimate piece of work that will bring us that J.K.Rowling-like stardom.
However, that doesn’t always work for writers, and sometimes a bit of human contact and quality discussion among peers can keep that momentum going.
Finding Myself a Mentor
I told her my issues and dilemmas, and she returned with options and advice. It was a refreshing exercise as it has been a while since I last reviewed my goals and direction as a writer.
What Jeannie told me wasn’t anything new and were information I already had somewhere deep in me. What Jeannie was able to offer, was a new perspective and to allow me to evaluate the same thoughts with a defined, easy to follow method.
So if there’s nothing brand new I could learn from Jeannie, why didn’t I just sit down and think about it instead of seeking the help of a mentor?
Because all of us need to be reminded of things we know, especially during times when all seem lost and overwhelming we can lose sense of direction and forget where we were originally heading. It’s kind of like people telling you to be careful crossing the street: you knew that already, but it takes another voice to confirm that you need to action on it too.
While I am still establishing my mark in a new market, while I am still struggling to get my stories sold, at least I know the direction of which I need to go. I also know that when I am feeling down and low, I need to stop turning into my writer’s self and seek a mentor’s help because there is always room for a new perspective.
So if you are also feeling a bit stuck, have a goal that seem to be floating away a little too fast, reach out and find a mentor. Yes, you may have to pay for their services but a good mentor can be worth their value in gold!