As a writer, you experience roadblocks and you wonder if it is just you. You may also have asked a friend or colleague and their challenge is not same as yours. In this article, we have explored some common roadblocks that can get in the way of your writing and what you can do to overcome them.
Common Roadblocks That Can Get in the Way of Your Writing
I have been in the writing field for so long that I can denote or decipher a roadblock when I see one matter how masked it is. The way writers coordinate themselves differentiates them from other professions. There’s always a saying that determination is the key or motor to success, that is an old cliche, but it reflects our everyday lives.
Any successful writers still battle the roadblocks over the years and are still counting. Meanwhile, there’s been several ways devised to help writers when they experience roadblocks while writing. It is more frustrating to lack the courage to start working on a project or complete an ongoing one. It is also more discouraging when you realize your friends are in the same category with no one to help the other out.
Some writers meet some obstructions on their writing journey and term it writer’s block, but these two – roadblocks and writer’s block – are the same in meaning.
There is a keyword to note in the topic above; Roadblocks. To put it in a more precise scenario – roadblocks are blockages or signs hindering motorists from driving in a particular lane. It might be a blockage from the authorities or other criteria.
How to define roadblocks in writing
In writing, roadblocks mean the barriers and obstructions one meets in the course of writing that tends to hinder the progress of the writing process. Several events may lead to a blockage or halting of one’s work. We would be analyzing common ones encountered while writing.
The most common roadblocks encountered by writers include
Everyone doubts themselves at some point in life. Doubt occurs mostly in the early stages when you are still young in various fields. There’s this fear you experience every time you finish your writing – the fear of being rejected. This rejection might make you feel that you’re not a good writer even though you are unsure what impact it would have on its reader.
When I finished my first anthology, I doubted its quality. This doubt originated from regular visits to Facebook poetry groups where I read great writers’ works – internationally recognized bards. I had posted a few of my works there in the past, and I was criticized and educated. It made me edit a particular poem severally. This experience brought my fears back when I wanted to publish my work. It took me weeks to finally convince myself to do that.
Doubt can eat one up and keep him from achieving a set-out goal. Overcome doubt within you in every way possible. Building up strong self-confidence is a good battle armor against doubts.
Not Knowing How and Where to Start
Many wait ‘for the kingdom to come’ before they start writing. There’s an impression to correct there – writing doesn’t need a plan to start. If you have a picture in your mind, pen it down. This is the simplest form of beginning to write – there’s no gateway to writing but starting.
The ‘where’ to start is a place where there’s a table and a chair. It may be on the bed or on a phone. The ‘where’ can be anywhere, in cafeterias, malls, supermarkets, etc.
The ‘how’ to start is penning down what you feel is your story, the way you feel them; editing can always come later. You don’t have to wait to start. Just start, and this roadblock vanishes.
Striving to be perfect
There’s a bonus for you if your work is perfect, but your work is creative when you have a unique style. Unfortunately, many writers, especially contemporary ones, are battling this roadblock – perfectionism. When it becomes a major challenge, many abandon their work because they feel they are not perfect enough. The secret to writing is that readers want your creativity with a touch of grammar.
The beauty of writing is to be able to thrill your readers with your creativity adorned with simplified grammar. You bore your readers out when you use verbose words, which sometimes turn out to be ambiguous and tautological.
Too many engagements
Many times while writing, you feel this urge to check your mail, WhatsApp, Messenger, or other social networks. Many hindrances keep you from completing your writing project. I have a friend, who started writing for a movie production company – when there’s work to handle, she stays off all social networks and concentrates fully on the project until it is finished. She would stay off for a month or two handling
her tasks. This is a determination on her end; it can be for you too.
Sometimes, it might be that you have places to go or other tasks to complete, such as doing the dishes, washing clothes, or shopping for yourself or your family. You can decide to carve out time for writing daily but direct your timeframe and schedule time for every task. You can dedicate 4hrs to writing or less daily, depending on your project, volume, and quality.
There’s always a feeling in lazy writers that makes them believe they can start and finish up writing projects once they set out for it – this makes them say that writing is easy. Well, it looks easy until you decide to find out how it is. Do not say you have enough time when you want to start; there are many hurdles on the way that might consume the time you think you have. Starting early will only make you arrive just in time and have enough time for editing, proofreading, and maybe publishing if you planned for it.
Do not try to leave your work for later when you already started it. As stated above, about too many engagements, you can separate your reading and writing time to achieve your aim. This is because when you say you’ll come back to it, you may never find the time to do so, forget, or lose interest altogether.
Hurdles present themselves in every walk of life, and there’s always a way around them. As a budding writer, you have the opportunity to read other writers to know how best to go around
your hurdle or roadblock when you find yourself facing one.
This is to say, just like I stipulated in my former works on the pages of this website, that reading is the best form of school for writers at the infant and adult levels. Adopt a style; it’ll make you fight perfectionism more than you know. You will become YOU in your style that other budding writers might find your work as a muse.
Written by Izuchukwu Ugwu
Editor & Reviewer: Chinyere Nwosu