This week, I asked writers to share their biggest writing hurdles. I want to know where writers are struggling, because whether you’re just starting out or writing full-time, you’ll face a variety of internal and external hurdles over the years. You don’t have to freeze up or give up when facing these hurdles. Discover ways to overcome them.
Knowing your top hurdles will help me create content through blog posts and podcasts in the weeks ahead. Even via social media I hope to generate conversation and solutions to these hurdles.
I provided a list 15 hurdles you might face and asked you to rank them in order. Thank you for your participation. Here are the top five.
1. Writer’s Block
Because so many writers cite this as their biggest hurdle, we’ll need to get to the bottom of it. I’ll be exploring the trouble of writer’s block. If you’re currently stuck, I want you to experience release and freedom to create again. If you find yourself blocked in the future, I want you to have a resource to return to. Stay tuned.
2. Lack of Productivity / Time Management / Scheduling Challenges
Though creative types stereotypically struggle with time management and scheduling, don’t feel alone. People from all walks of life find it a challenge to organize their schedules and systems to accomplish tasks more effectively and efficiently, making the most of their time. We can all experiment and find an approach that fits the way we think, live, create, and work.
3. Lack of Confidence
Writers just getting started often feel uncertain about some aspect of their work; experienced writers can feel shaky when they embark on a new project or let significant time pass between assignments. How can we gain confidence at any stage of the writing life? We’ll discuss this in a future post.
4. Lack of Ideas
How do some writers seem to have an endless supply of material? Where do the ideas come from? Are there secrets to finding things to write about? What resources can we use to store those ideas so we can access them when it’s time to write? Watch for a practical post packed with methods for collecting, generating, storing and retrieving ideas. [Update: I’ve published a comprehensive post on how to generate ideas for writing]
5. Compare with Others / Feeling Inferior or Irrelevant
Oh, friend. It’s human nature to look around and feel you fall short or to believe your work isn’t needed in this world of established, experienced writers, but doing so gets us nowhere except slogging through a slough of despond. Expect to hear me plead with you to believe the truth about yourself. There’s writing to be done. By you. I have more to say on this, but start with that.
These aren’t the only things writers struggle with, but these top five from the survey remind me that if we identify the root problem(s) and seek a healthy mindset, habits, tools, and encouragement, we can clear those hurdles.
Thank you again for your responses. I look forward to offering specific input in the weeks again.
Image by Isabelle Kroeker, used with permission.
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You may enjoy this resource for your writing life: On Being a Writer
“a must-have for career writers, whether seasoned or just starting out.”
— from “10 Great Books for a Writer’s Wish List” on Huffington Post
“A genial marriage of practice and theory. For writers new and seasoned. This book is a winner.”
—Philip Gulley, author of Front Porch Tales