October 1 – 31, 2015

ice cube with pencil symbolizes writer's block

Suffering from writer’s block? Laurie’s workshop Breaking Free Of Writer’s Block promises relief.

Most of us have struggled with writer’s block or its kinder, gentler cousin aversion to writing at least once in our writing careers. Blocks to creativity develop for several reasons, but some of the most common are:

A crisis of confidence: You’ve received a critique, a review, a rejection letter, or some other feedback that makes you doubt your ability to write at all, or at least well enough to reach your writing goals.

Being out of the story or out of the loop of writing: This one happens to most of us, probably more frequently than we’d like to admit. It happens when life gets busy, when things in our “real” life demand so much of us that we have little or no time for the people in our heads demanding we tell their story.

Being out of step with our characters: You know you’ve met this one when you go to the computer only to find your characters standing in your subconscious with their arms folded across their chests shaking their heads saying, “I know what you want me to do. I understand why you think you need me to do it, but no way, no how, for no amount of money am I going to do it. It’s not happening in this lifetime.”

Having written yourself into a corner: This one happens most often to pantsers but can happen to outliners too. It happens when the story evolves, the characters take over, you give them free rein, and they do what they want…like fall into bed, admit they love each other and are ready to live happily ever after, on page 5.

As you can probably guess, the symptoms of all of these blocks are similar. They’re marked by a desire to be busy (too busy to write), a shutdown of creative energy or creative flow when you do sit down to write, a feeling of being totally flummoxed by the story and how to make it go where you want it to go, and of course a growing uneasy feeling when you think about writing…which exacerbates all the symptoms so that the block gets bigger and deeper and darker as the days tick on.

The first thing to realize is that all writers’ blocks are not the same. The treatment for them is not the same. Some treatments will help to a degree no matter what causes the block, but just as there are specific antibiotics that work better on bladder infections and certain ones that work better for throat infections there are certain treatments that work better on certain types of writers block.

During this workshop we’ll work first on diagnosing the various kinds of writer’s blocks by examining their symptoms and the situations in which they occur. From there we’ll move on to examine specific tips, techniques, and cures for each specific kind of block, as well as tips, tricks, and techniques to keep it from happening again.

This class is being hosted by OIRWA. You can register for it at their website at:

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