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Wednesday, August 5

Don't Make Light of Another Writer's Plight / IWSG + Keep Writing with Fey BLOG HOP



The Insecure Writer's Support Group is a safe place for insecure writers of all kinds.


August 5 Question - Quote: "Although I have written a short story collection, the form found me and not the other way around. Don't write short stories, novels or poems. Just write your truth and your stories will mold into the shapes they need to be."

Have you ever written a piece that became a form, or even a genre, you hadn't planned on writing in? Or do you choose a form/genre in advance?

Co-Hosts:
Chrys Fey (me) 


Not only is it IWSG Day, but it's also blog hop day for Keep Writing with Fey: Sparks to Defeat Writer's Block, Depression, and Burnout.

Participants are sharing their stories about writer's block, depression, and/or burnout and how they overcame it or what they are currently doing to heal.

Visit them here:




Don't Make Light of Another Writer's Plight


Since I talk about my struggles and the things I have done that helped me with writer’s block, depression, and burnout in Keep Writing with Fey, I am going to do something a little different for this post.


WRITER'S BLOCK:

There are people who will say that writer’s block isn’t real. I disagree. (Obviously.) I’m not going to try to change anyone’s mind if they believe there’s no such thing as writer’s block, as I hope they will allow me my opinion, but I do want to address something.

Whenever someone says that writer’s block doesn’t exist or is a myth, they usually follow that up with something like “you just have to put your butt in the seat and write.” Or they will even claim that you’re just not writing because you don’t want it badly enough.

That is pretty damaging to hear when you're the writer struggling.

You can certainly believe writer’s block isn't real (again, I’m not attempting to change your mind), but PLEASE do NOT further knock down the writers who are struggling (for whatever reason), because you don’t know what challenges they're facing in life that you, yourself, are not facing. You don’t know how they feel when they want to write and try but nothing happens. And you won’t know until it happens to you.

One day, it might, whether you believe it’s real or not. You might even give it another name, since you don’t believe writer’s block is an actual condition. That doesn’t matter. What matters is that no one makes light of your struggles, so please, don’t make light of another writer’s hardships when they say they have writer’s block. Don’t laugh. Don’t roll your eyes. Don’t say it’s a cop out. Instead, offer support. We all need to be more supportive of each other.

 

BURNOUT:

Writer's burnout (or any kind of burnout) can come and go for some, but it doesn’t just disappear for everyone. And for some people, as it was for me, it is a very big deal. (My burnout wasn’t a symptom of writing too much. It was a symptom of EVERYTHING related to being an author.) My experience with burnout was destructive. It lasted a year (more even, since I didn't identify it until a year had already passed), and I couldn’t write. I tried. I tried my hardest. I WANTED to write. Sometimes I’d manage to write a little one day, only for my burnout to be even worse the next day.

Your burnout might not have lasted long, and you might have been able to get out of it with a bit of downtime, but not every case of burnout is the same, just as every writer is different. A short break sometimes isn’t enough.

Maybe you’ve never experienced burnout, in which case you’re fortunate and I hope you never do, but not having had to deal with something up to this point doesn’t mean you’re immune.

And did you know...? Burnout is an official MEDICAL CONDITION.


DEPRESSION:

Finally, there are even people who believe depression is fake…a lie. They don’t understand depression or why someone can’t just pull themselves out of it. Just because you’ve never experienced depression doesn’t mean it’s fake or not serious, and it’s definitely not something that someone can turn off like flipping a switch.


I never thought I’d have writer’s block…until I did.

I never thought I’d be depressed…until I was.

I never thought I’d get burned out…until burnout nearly derailed everything.

So, please, don’t make light of another writer's plight.

If you have or are experiencing writer’s block, depression, and/or burnout, check out my book. I hope it helps you through your hardships.


Take care, everyone! And thank you for taking part in my blog hop!



BLURB:

Catch the sparks you need to conquer writer’s block, depression, and burnout!
When Chrys Fey shared her story about depression and burnout, it struck a chord with other writers. That put into perspective for her how desperate writers are to hear they aren’t alone. Many creative types experience these challenges, battling to recover. Let Keep Writing with Fey: Sparks to Defeat Writer's Block, Depression, and Burnout guide you through:
· Writer's block
· Depression
· Writer's burnout
· What a writer doesn’t need to succeed
· Finding creativity boosts
With these sparks, you can begin your journey of rediscovering your creativity and get back to what you love - writing.
BUY LINKS:
Amazon / Nook / iTunes / Kobo



SHARE: Your story about writer's block, depression, and/or burnout and how you overcame it or what you are currently doing to heal.


123 comments:

  1. We don't know what someone else is going through. We all experience things differently.
    Thanks for co-hosting today!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for co-hosting with me today, Chrys and for addressing something that I struggled with in the past year and still wrestle when I least expect it. Our job: be kind, be supportive and understanding even when we don't understand!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for co-hosting, too, Nancy!

      I like that...that is our job. Sadly, many don't believe it is or don't take that job seriously. They/we should. <3

      Delete
  3. Hi Chrys - well done ... we so often to forget how others are feeling - my way of looking at it is what's the other person going through ... and be as gentle as I can at all times. Nancy says it well too ... be kind, supportive and understanding ... just that positive 'nod' really helps. Take care and good to see your blog hop ... Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, yes, that positive nod. Even getting those in the form of a comment is reassuring and comforting. <3

      Delete
  4. All of those things are very real. People believe when it hits them, that's for sure.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, people often don't believe in things unless they see it or experience it firsthand.

      Delete
  5. Great post, Chrys! I'm glad to be part of your blog hop!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! And thank you so much for particpating!

      Delete
  6. Replies
    1. You're welcome. Every month, the co-hosts are amazing. <3

      Delete
  7. Hi,
    What you have written above is very true. People or writers don't believe it until it hits them.
    All the best and I look forward to your book coming out in September. I've already pre purchased my copy.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! And thank you so much for pre-ordering Frozen Crimes. <3

      Delete
  8. you put yourself out there with your books, video chats and blog posts. we appreciate it and i feel it help us all to know we are not alone

    sherry @ fundinmental

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Sharing my story has helped me in many ways.

      Delete
  9. It's sad how many of us have experienced burnout. Wouldn't wish upon anyone. Glad you're on the upside. Congratulations on your release, Chrys. It's an amazing book. Thanks for co-hosting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wouldn't wish it on anyone, either.

      Thank you, Joylene!

      Delete
  10. So true! We are all different and we all struggle and succeed differently. Part of the beauty of humanity is the diversity in ourselves and our styles. We need to support each other whenever we can!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Part of the beauty of humanity is the diversity in ourselves and our styles.." <---- YESSS!!!

      Delete
  11. I've unfortunately met people who genuinely didn't understand why I had depression in the past, and thought it was very easy and simple to fix. I was so shocked at their statements, I couldn't find words to respond intelligently. It seems like mental health and mental illness are the last things left it's still considered socially acceptable to mock.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And it's so sad, too. Mental health and mental illness are not jokes. They are serious and should be treated as such.

      Delete
  12. Congrats again on your release, Chrys! It's a fantastic book!

    ReplyDelete
  13. So glad you shared your thoughts on this, today. (And for sharing them in the book, which was fabulous.) As we've already discussed, up until last year I'd only experienced teeny bouts of not feeling like writing or feeling stuck to move forward within a story, which I mistook for writer's block. Thus, I kind of shrugged it off as an attitude or lack of discipline. But this last 18 months has shown me differently. The tragedies that my family went through last year put me in such a funk I not only didn't want to write, but I didn't even feel like reading. It's been hard getting back at it. But I'm learning to go easier on myself. Learning to set smaller writing goals - like a chapter a month - is helping. I still find myself waning, at times. When that happens, I get on here to read and chat with so many amazing fellow writers. Very thankful to have everyone on the internet. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Grr... Should have read '...these last 18 months have shown...' LOL

      Delete
    2. Learning to get easier on ourselves is so important and a huge step in the process. It can be difficult at first, until we really do come to terms with things and see that it's not our fault.

      The IWSG community has really helped me in the past.

      Delete
  14. So true! Never are we justified to tell people what they are feeling is just not true, or right, or necessary. I hope overall we become more of an empathetic culture, and your writing points us in that right direction!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope for that, too. Thanks for visiting my blog and for commenting, Lynn!

      Delete
  15. So agree with everything you said, Chrys. Glad to be a part of your blog hop too.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Whatever you call it, there are times I just can't write. Who knows what causes that? Congratulations again on your new book and thanks for co-hosting this August Wednesday.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Any numbers of things can cause it.

      Thank you! <3

      Delete
  17. To that I say... Amen. Also thanks for writing the books, because we none of us know when we’ll need that help.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I wouldn't make light of what another writer is going through – chances are it's already happened to me, or will in the future.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I am really looking forward to reading and reviewing your book next week. I have definitely struggled with all of the above.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I truly hope you get a lot out of it, Doreen. <3

      Delete
  20. Hi, Chris, and thanks for co-hosting today. I've never experienced a time when the words just wouldn't come, but I've sure 'nuf experienced times when writing was much harder. Hello, pandemic brain. I'm currently working with someone who's struggling with writer's block, and I don't really know how to help, other than to encourage rest, creative cross-training, and a daily try.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Being there for that writer in whatever way you can will make all the difference. <3

      Delete
  21. I've never had writer's block, but I've certainly experienced burnout and depression (as well as some fun crippling anxiety) so I'm not going to knock anyone else for it. Everyone experiences the world differently - pain, sadness, joy, everything - so you can't discount anyone's experience. Their view is just as valid and real as yours.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've experienced anxiety as well, mostly related to social media and family drama. Not fun. At all.

      "Their view is just as valid and real as yours.: <--- Absolutely right!

      Delete
  22. I can relate to writer's block, depression and burnout. This year has really knowcked me sideways as living alone is not to be reccomeneded.
    Will bounce back as I have a book to finish to honour my late son.
    Keep safe and well Chrys.
    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope finishing your book helps you, Yvonne!

      Delete
  23. Thanks for co-hosting the IWSG this month and for hosting your book blog hop. It was a great excuse to write about things I'm been keeping to myself because I thought no one wanted to hear it. I'm so happy you released this book.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sending you hugs. We often think no one wants to hear about our struggles or will care, but that's not true. Sharing our stories can be very healing. I'm glad you participated in my blog hop. <3

      Delete
  24. I haven't written long enough for me to have had either writer's block or writer's burnout. Or maybe I did, but I just chalked it up to life events and called it something else. But just sitting down in a chair and trying to write when it's not coming is like telling someone who suffers from depression, "Just get up and do something fun. It'll fix itself."

    Thanks for co-hosting IWSG this month!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It really doesn't matter how long someone has been writing. Writer's block and burnout will come regardless. You could start writing and months later experience either one. These aren't things that happen only to writers who have been at it for X amount of time. No one, not even beginners, are immune. <3

      Delete
  25. Hi Chrys--Good ideas for these horrible maladies. I missed signing up for your blog hop... Sigh... Would it be alright to simply review the book and then post the review on my blog? That would be sometime in September or October--or I'll publish it with your next book push. Just let me know!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That would be perfect. Thank you for the offer! I will email you. :)

      Delete
    2. OK, I just bought it. I should have some ideas by the time you email me!

      Delete
    3. I wasn't sure if you would get notified of my reply to your comment, but that's okay. I will still email you. :) And thank you for getting a copy!

      Delete
  26. I suppose it's all in how you define the idea of writer's block. Maybe people find it hard to believe you could sit down and not be able to write anything at all as if some malign force is keeping your fingers from moving. But for me, it's not that I can't type or write, it's that I seriously doubt the value of what I am writing, or I can't focus and waste hours reading CNN or watching YouTube, or I force myself to write like a kid holding their nose and swallowing bad medicine in one huge gulp, instead of being able to enjoy the creative process. Whatever it is, it is not how I want to experience writing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Many people can have different ideas of what writer's block is. I discuss that in my book. :) Either way, no matter how someone may view or define writer's block, it's not something to make light of. I don't want to experience writing that way, either.

      Delete
  27. Everyone experiences these things differently, but that doesn't make the experiences any less real. Sometimes just listening, without offering any advice, is what is needed.

    ReplyDelete
  28. I'm not sure that I understand the difference between writer's block and burnout, but you words are very useful. I hope anyone tempted to knock another writer for any reason thinks twice.
    Thanks for co-hosting today, Chrys :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You could read my book to find out the difference, because they are very different. You can feel burnout in your bones.

      I hope so, too!

      Delete
  29. A very insightful post. So many of us suffer from the writing maladies you mention, but so few non-writers understand. It seems pointless to even talk to non-writers about my writer's block, for example. I don't, usually.
    As for depression, it's chemical. It has nothing to do with 'picking yourself up'. None of us could 'pick up' the wrong chemicals in our brains. It takes time, strong psychological efforts, and sometimes, medications. If some ignoramuses don't understand, it's probably a good idea to avoid them. Their rejections of your depression could only deepen it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, exactly. None of my non-writer friends and family members understand. That's why having writer friends (like with the IWSG) is is important.

      "None of us could 'pick up' the wrong chemicals in our brains." <--- Well said!

      Delete
  30. Great Post and such great advice! Writers struggle more than we let on.

    Thanks for co-hosting, Chrys.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We certainly do, unfortunately. I hope my book helps many realize that it's okay to talk about it and be open. <3

      Delete
  31. Thanks for co-hosting! Depression is never fake. It's serious. I'm glad you found a way to put your positive sparks into a book to help everyone who deals with it and burnout. Thank you, Chrys!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Well said, Chrys! The longer I live, the more I am humbled by the judging-too-quickly mistakes I have made in my lifetime. Until you've walked in someone else's shoes, you have no right to be dismissive of his or her experiences, feelings, and choices. And if you're lucky enough to live a long time, you just might experience such things yourself, and you may be shocked at how you react and the actions you take. Like I said, I've been humbled. I didn't write about my experiences with depression in your blog hop, but I may do another post next Friday on my SID blog and address it in the context of your book. Playing with the idea, quite likely to do it. Have fun co-hosting today! It's definitely a warmed-up-leftovers dinner for Terry and me tonight ~ LOL!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I appreciate your comment so much, and I love that my blog hop question has you thinking and you may use it for another post. Let me know when that post goes up, if you decide to do it, so I can read it. :)

      Delete
  33. I'm astounded to hear that there are people who believe that Writers Block isn't real--I wonder if they believe that the earth is flat. LOL!

    My daughter came across a friend who said that creativity is like crop rotation: the reason farmers do it is so that they can rejuvinate the nutrients in the soil so that the new crop would thrive. If we rotate our creative outlets (writing, drawing, cooking, baking, editing, formatting, marketing), our minds will be more than likely ready to get back into writing! (( <3 ))

    Thank you for the glorious opportunity to participate in your blog hop!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was astounded to learn that, too, and read the proof. If you Google "Is writer's block real?" you'll see articles about it and how there are authors who say it's not.

      I really like that analogy.

      You're welcome! And thanks for participating!

      Delete
  34. Burnout and writer's block are very real and I believe most writers have experienced at least one, if not both, at some point in their life.

    ReplyDelete
  35. I'm kickin the dirt here, Lady Chrys! I didn't know about your bloghop. But what a great turnout ;-) It's wonderful that you bring to light the darker sides of writing. It's good to know we're not alone. Thanks so much for sharing this - and for co-hosting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is very good to know we're not alone. We need that. :)

      Delete
  36. I've experienced all of it; burnout, writers block, depression. It is real, but even if it wasn't, it's nobody's right to criticize or tell you your feelings are wrong. Now me, heh, I don't share stuff so...also not healthy, I know. Congrats on your new release, Chrys! Best of luck to you :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It isn't anyone's right, but in this world, everyone thinks it is. It's very unfortunate.

      Thank you!

      Delete
  37. I've had all three, sometimes two at once and I agree. They are real. Too real. People that don't understand aren't worth thinking about. Here's why: ignorance is bliss because they see no other world but theirs. 'Nuff said. ;-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had depression and burnout together. It was horrible.

      Delete
  38. Thanks for sharing your experience with others. I think it is an important calling of survivors to help others survive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A calling of survivors to help other survivors....I love that!

      Delete
  39. Oh, my gosh, absolutely agree with you, Chrys! I can't believe some people can be so insensitive. Writer's block not real? Depression not real? B.S.!!

    You are one of the hardest working authors I know and it could very well be that your burnout was a way that your mind was telling your body to take a break. Just thinking out loud. I know when I get blocked there is other shit going on in my brain and there is only so much space up there!
    In any case your new book sounds amazing and will help me and many other authors navigate a difficult time with productivity and writer's block.

    As for genres...interesting question. I think stories come to me and then there is even confusion about what the genre will be. Eventually genre becomes clearer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Lisa! I really was doing too much, pushing myself too much that caused my burned out. And then add in family drama and depression...not fun.

      I sincerely hope my book helps you. Thank you!

      Delete
  40. Currently feeling the writer burn out, but it's been that way for a few years now. Hoping one day I'll be back.Thanks so much for sharing your encouragement.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope you can find relief and the spark to get back to your creative, energized self.

      Delete
  41. Lovely post--and good advice! @samanthabwriter from
    Balancing Act

    ReplyDelete
  42. You're so right. There are so many things that can interfere with a person's ability to write, and until you've experienced them for yourself, you have no idea what it's like. We need to be supportive of each other. There's nothing like a good listener to lift the spirits. Thank you for co-hosting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A good listener is key and talking about our struggles can be so healing.

      Delete
  43. I have learned that what people feel is valid. I know, that's a strange thing to say. We get entrenched in our own beliefs, so when someone says something that goes against those beliefs we want to fix it and make it fit the view we have of the world. At some point, I learned to release my view and let whatever someone else says about their experience to be valid. It doesn't have to fit my worldview. That, and to just listen when someone talks about what they're feeling.

    I guess we're too used to trying to "fix" people and things. We shouldn't. Well, not unless someone asks us for help. Then we should help, even if it's just being a safe space where someone can talk.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's the problem that a lot of us have...we don't listen. We don't let others speak their truth. We don't let them own their feelings without us saying something to cancel those feelings out, as if they don't matter or are wrong. Everyone's feelings matter. No feeling is wrong.

      Thanks for your comment, Liz!

      Delete
  44. Chrys, "don’t make light of another writer's plight" this is spot on. We in this blogging community have a platform to not only survive but thrive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've definitely survived and thrived here. :)

      Delete
  45. Thanks Chrys for co-hosting this IWSG. Bravo for your Sparks guide, very helpful tips. Thanks also for hosting the Goodreads book club; although I don’t participate much, I regularly take a peek at what you guys are up to.
    Wishing you a Happy IWSG blog hop and your own Sparks blog hop.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Susan! And I'm really glad that you pop in to the Goodreads group to see what we are doing. :)

      Delete
  46. This is such a wonderful initiative Chris! Fortunately I haven’t faced Writer’s Block and Burnout but I do believe it’s very real. It’s great that you’re being so supportive here.
    www.nooranandchawla.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I received support when I needed it, so I can only provide support back. :)

      Delete
  47. Kind thanks for sharing this. I've almost stopped sharing my writing publicly on several occasions because people were extremely rude when I tried to describe what I was going through. I don't put up with that sort of thing anymore. Supporting each other is very important, even if we aren't coming from the same point of view.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's horrible that people were rude to you when you shared what you were going through. The Insecure Writer's Support Group is very supportive. <3

      Delete
  48. I've mostly found writers to be very supportive of others going through tough times, but there are always those people who don't understand. Thanks for being open and sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Hi Chyrs...

    Thanks so much for publishing such a much-needed book. WE ALL experience these emotions and coming to terms with them is healthy. Giving us your experiences and advice is a wonderful thing. I know you have been suffering from depression since we became blogger friends years ago. You have managed beautifully and now you are sharing your techniques with others who may be experiencing the same thing. You should be very proud of yourself for all your accomplishments in our community. BRAVO!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for such a nice comment, Michael! :)

      Delete
  50. Writer's Block is defo a thing and I think there's two ways of approaching it -- give yourself a break and come back to it fresh, or do some freewriting to tap into your creativity.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sometimes, though, giving yourself a break and free-writing doesn't do the trick.

      Delete
  51. Congratulations on your new release, Chrys. Happy to see the high participation in your blog hop; certainly a topic that affects us all.

    I have a problem with people who cannot put themselves in other people's shoes or deny the existence of facts (Coronavirus, anyone?), conditions, and experiences, because they have never gone through it/them themselves.

    I think most of us understand what burnout feels like. I hope depression has only happened to a few. And, in the case of writer's block, it can be helped or improved (hence your book). That being said, I have not experienced it, because I'm not a professional author, really, which means I have loads of distractions, and I feel that I have so many writing ideas bubbling in my mind that if I get stuck with one project, there are others to tap into.

    Thank you for co-hosting and success with the blog tour and book sales!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Lisbet!

      But you don't have to be a professional author to experience block. A hobby writer can also get blocked.

      Delete
  52. I’m sorry that there were people who doubted what you and many others have gone through and continue to go through everyday. I admire your strength and bravery in battling depression, as well as, your willingness to help others. Best of luck on your new book, Chrys!

    Julie

    ReplyDelete
  53. You're right that we all need to be more cognizant of what we say to others. Whether it's something we believe in or have experienced, it's valid to the person suffering it. I remember you suffering through it, and hope I only said supportive things. And I'm doubly glad you're back to enjoying it some.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You were definitely supportive, Shannon. Thank you!

      Delete
  54. Good advice. Actually, making fun or light of anyone who is struggling with anything should be avoided. Why can't we be nice to one another?

    www.thepulpitandthepen.com

    ReplyDelete
  55. A huge congrats on your release! Oh, and I'm emailing you soon. I believe I forgot that I promised to write something ;)

    ReplyDelete
  56. Thank you for the encouraging words and for co-hosting!

    ReplyDelete
  57. Thanks for an excellent post. One of the worst things we can do is dismiss someone else's struggles... and that goes for any context or field of endeavour.

    ReplyDelete
  58. I posted a link to your page on my Twitter page (hope that's okay because if not I'll remove it) because I think what you wrote is definitely relevant, especially right now, when a lot of people are struggling with depression and burnout made even worse by the pandemic and all the problems that came with it. I've struggled with writing burnout many times, mainly because of my multiple jobs that left me with little energy or time to write what I really wanted to write.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is totally okay. Thank you! And I hope you are doing okay during these tough times and are not experiencing burnout. <3

      Delete

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