Dealing with Constipation

Outhouse in Four Mile Old West Town

Image by Photomatt28 via Flickr

I know the only reason you’re reading this post is because of the title. I’m sorry, that was intentional. I am dealing with constipation right now but not the sort you’re thinking of. For me, this kind is much worse.

I’m dealing with writing constipation. AKA writer’s block.

When I wrote my first novel, The Hunted, the story just flowed out of me, so fast at times my fingers couldn’t type fast enough to keep up with it. My second novel, Scream, was the same way. The stories consumed me and occupied my mind even when I was not writing. I thought about the characters, the plot, the twists and turns, all the time. Writer’s block was never an issue.

Then something happened . . . life got more complicated. I started building a loyal readership; I got a multi-book contract with deadlines; I became more aware of and involved in marketing my books, publicizing, blog posts, Facebook, Twitter. I started receiving more correspondence from readers.

I had more than just the story begging for brain time. With each book the “responsibilities” of being an author get weightier and I have a harder time focusing on the story.

And now it’s led to this: I’m officially constipated. I’ve gotten about a third of the way through my current project and I’m stuck. I know where the story is going, even what the next several scenes will look like, but I can’t find the words to describe them. I’ve tried, believe me I have, but nothing happens.

This is a dangerous thing because once this constipation sets in motivation starts to wane and I begin second-guessing the story I was so pumped about just a few weeks ago. I’m wondering now if I just wasted a month of writing.

So what do I do? Well, I could try to force the issue (sorry for the pun) but I doubt that would do anything more than cause more consternation. What I need is a good creative laxative, something to get me amped about writing again, to get the story moving (pun again). I’ll wait it out a few more days then make a decision about whether to set it aside altogether and start on something else or whether to plod along and try to get things going again.

I hate when this happens.


About mikedellosso

Mike Dellosso is an author of wide-eyed suspense. He writes stories that not only entertain but enlighten.

Posted on October 26, 2011, in Life in General, Writing Life and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. Mike,
    What you need is prayer brother. Send out a prayer request to your readership. There is a reason you are a Christian author and not just an author. You have the power of Christ behind you and your work. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you and to give you the words that He would have you write. Write for Him. I am praying that God will grant you the words that He wants you to write. No matter what, praise Him in the struggles and in the good times. God Bless you brother.
    In Christ, Justin.


  2. Mike, I actually did read the post because of the title. I have IBS with constipation and thought you had some good advice! However, I will pray for a good creative laxative, minus all the cramping. 🙂 Couldn’t resist that last part. I will seriously pray for you to be running over with great ideas.


  3. Mike, I suggest you start by distancing yourself from this metaphor! 😀 Let’s face it, if you’re looking at writing in the same way as elimination … well, no wonder you don’t know where to take your story.

    Seriously, I suggest you go back to basics. What does your character want? What’s his goal? What would be his next logical goal to achieve that goal?

    God’s grace.



  4. I think your “diet” might need a little more variety. Have you tried something completely unrelated to writing. I think even a short time away and getting involved in something new and challenging might help. Perhaps a good run, hitting the gym and having it out with a punching bag, preparing a nice meal for you family. Or something crazy like finger painting or using modeling clay with your girls. Maybe a good pillow fight… you get the ideas…

    Peace and Blessing,


  5. Mike,

    You are my favorite author. I fully support you and would buy any of your work and also recommend you to others. I fully believe in you and the creative gift God has given you. I agree with the support and encouragement others have left here. Don’t give up; God has not and neither have we, your faithful readers and supporters.

    He is not finished with you yet and neither are we!!




  6. I am going to add my prayers to this issue. God will inspire you with just what you need! He is our Provider!! Praise HIM!!


  7. You didn’t fool me with the title. I was expecting a bait and switch. 🙂
    I suggest you try a nice artist’s date with yourself and wait for these prayers to kick in.
    Tomorrow, may your fingers have a hard time keeping up with your brain!


  8. Mike, do you happen to have an AlphaSmart? It helps me to get away from the distractions of the Internet when I need to JUST WRITE. It weighs only 2 lb and is very cheap (i.e. used on Amazon for around 60.) I’d hate for writer’s block to keep you from any more works of staggering genius. 🙂


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