Got A Writing Problem? Let Me Know

Writing problemYou there, reading this…

I need your help.

I’ve had an idea. I know. I know. Finish the chuffing books you’re working on first. But you know I can’t help myself. Besides, this is for research purposes only…I won’t write a word until at least one of my other books is finished…honest.

Have you ever, or do you currently have a problem with your writing?

It could be ANYTHING. From pesky crutch words, to not being able to blend between scenes or chapters. Maybe you just can’t get your character arc right. Or perhaps its dialogue that plagues you. Is it the outline? The synopsis? Or just plain old fight scenes that bug you.

Whatever your writing woe/s, I am desperate to find out.


Sometimes I sit down at my computer ready to smash out words. Confident I am going to write the next war and peace. Then this happens:

confused

Roughly four seconds later I commence a bit of this:

angry writer

This can take a while… But eventually, I will stay sane long enough to bitch slap my angry puffer fish impression back into check. Sadly, the psychotic break usually ends me looking something like this:

umm

Is it just me, or does this happen to every writer? Alright, maybe in a little less extreme way. But if you ever get even a hint of frustrated with your manuscript I need to know.

I need a list of at least 100 common problems. That’s a lot, so if you know any other writers, please tell them and ask them to drop me a line.

To business, I need 5 pieces of information from you:

  1. A description of your writing woe/s (you can have as many as you like, but please don’t just say #everything!)
  2. Specifics: Does it happen every time you write a story? Or was it just the once? But importantly, why is this a problem for you.
  3. Let me know whether or not you over came it, and if you did how.
  4. Whether you are a plotter, Pantser or somewhere in the middle (this is also important)
  5. Lastly, whether you would be willing to let me contact you further on this specific problem, if so, a contact of some variety for you.

If you don’t want to leave a comment on here, please drop me a line on:

Sachablack87 (AT) gmail (DOT) com

Bonus points to anyone who answers this question: 

What do you define as writers block? Is it when you face a problem that takes an age to defeat, or is it the blankness of your mind?

Thank you in advance for helping me ❤

 If you liked this post, subscribe here to get writing tips, tools and inspiration as well as information on the release of my books.

143 comments

  1. Great post., Sacha. I hope someone comes to you with their woes. My only woe? Spending too much time on social media instead of writing. Not what you want, I know. Anyway – one writing woe you’ve just solved – the synopsis. So thank you.Jx

    Liked by 2 people

  2. 🙂 My biggest issue is if I think about what I want to write before I start writing, I go through all the motions you demonstrate so beautifully above. I need to dump it all on the page and then rearrange so it makes sense. When it comes to long form writing, this becomes problematic, because it basically means I’m pantsing for 50k+ words. 😛 Right now, I’m OUTLINING a novel in post-production. And I am DREADING having to shift the different parts around in Scrivener (I’m a newbie) and make sure the segues and transitions work…

    I am getting ready to start Book 2, and I fear that I’ll go about it in much the same way. I find my writing loads more interesting when I surprise even myself–so I don’t do much by way of outlining in pre-production, I’m afraid.

    And, of course, you may contact me — anytime. (I’m looking for a Writers’ Anonymous support group so I can overcome this porblem anyway.) 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ah ha. You are a vomiter! like me. I have to dump on the page and edit into perfection. Can’t edit as I go or I get stifled. I do a very very back of a fag packet outline pre writing, but I always end up outlining properly after too!! did you ever get that 50 page synopsis book I mentioned? That was a real winner for me. I haven’t needed an outline because the synopsis was what I was really after, and the whole point is to write it WITHOUT looking at your script. I really really recommend it, as it helped with all that timeline chunking too. Haha writers anonymous! Im always here for you! ❤

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Don’t delete it for fucks sake!!!!!!!! Just store it if u hate it! Please I beg u tho. Never delete that quantity of words.

      Can u tell me a little more about what u don’t like? Why u don’t like it… What is it u don’t like?

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Lol! It sounds so basic and I pick holes in it. I am terrible at this. I can pick holes in anything. I wrote 124k words last year and walked away from it. Trouble is all I want to do is write a book. The dream is eating away at me on a daily basis so it’s a cycle of write, delete, write, delete….aghhhhhh!!

        Liked by 1 person

    2. You should never be happy with your words. You should just work on them until your reach a place where you realize they’re ready to go and that further tweaking will just be tweaking. (Or, if you’re on a deadline, then it’s time to submit). But if you’re happy with your words, you never learn to write. The writers who never learn are the writers who are convinced their words can’t be improved and I know far too many of them.

      Liked by 5 people

    3. I’m with Sacha. Don’t you dare delete! We’ll find out where you kids go to school; we’ll remove cheese from your fridge. You have been warned! Roxy is a fabulous book in the making. She’s fabulous; you have a natural comic wotnot and great characters (I hate you btw – did I say that?). So none of this perfectionist sh*te, Lucy! True story. I wrote my first book. It was brilliant until I read it again and it was crap. So I chiselled it again and it was the best ever until I re read it. In the end after about 40 million edits I realised I had to publish it to stop myself going bonkers – unless I already was. People have been nice about it – well the ten who’ve read it – and the best thing is I don’t care any more. It happens every time but I now know it will never be perfect but good enough is actually good enough. Sorry, Sacha, I’ve butted in!

      Liked by 5 people

      1. For once Geoffle I’m going to agree with you. I know. I know. Don’t fall over in shock ffs, you might break a hip at your age 😱😂.

        Thing is Lucy, he’s totally right. I need a shower after saying that, but the point is first drafts are SHIT. Worse than shit. I’m editing now and fuck me. It’s unrecognisable. But the point is u don’t throw away, you edit. So get editing and stop chucking it away. So wasteful! 💖

        Liked by 1 person

    4. Lucy, I’m going to join the chorus saying, don’t you dare delete! You are such a good writer – sometimes putting work away lets us come back to it with a fresh perspective, especially if it’s something we’ve been looking at for a while.

      So, from one blonde pantser to another, please don’t delete 🙂

      Liked by 4 people

  3. Okay, you ready?

    1. Description and setting. I have the perfect picture in my head of what my characters look like and where they are, yet I have a hard time describing it on the page. I think when I write, I just assume the readers can see inside my head so I don’t always describe stuff. When I do describe stuff, it seems kind of out of place because you can tell I was trying to add in the description.

    2. This happens every time I write. A lot of time I’ll start something and I’ll be very good at the description, but then I lose my momentum because I get carried away with the story. I think my fingers type faster than my mind thinks sometimes. I have gotten better with it each time I write, but it is still a problem. It might always be a problem. Description seems to be more of an “editing” thing than a “writing” thing for me, if you know what I mean. It’s a problem because my poor readers don’t have any picture of what’s going on. Or they do, but it’s not what I imagined, not what the story is actually supposed to be.

    3. As I said, I’m slowly overcoming it. I just need to focus on it when I write. I think sometimes I just focus on getting it written. I need to remind myself that writing is not a race.

    4. I’m mostly a plotter. I’ve pantsed a few works before, but I prefer to plot. Lately I’ve been outlining about 90% of the things I write.

    5. Feel free to contact me for more information if you feel the need to. You know where to find me. 🙂

    Bonus: This is going to sound cliche, but… “Writers block is when your imaginary friends stop talking to you.” We all need a break at some point and most writers I know write every single day. That must burn your brain out depending on how much you end up writing. We all need mental health days once in a while from thinking and since our characters are in fact imaginary friends, they need the break as well. I think writers block is just the creative part of our brain saying it needs to recharge. After you clear your mind (wait a day, take a walk, read, etc.) you’re usually ready to get writing again; with new ideas, no less.

    Sorry for the long comment! I can’t wait to see what you’ll be doing with all this information. Let me know if you need help with anything. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah Rachel thank you so much for the lovely comment, its so helpful. I know what you mean about editing description in. I seem to be editing a lot in these days. Although I have got better with time. My first drafts aren’t as much of a cluster fuck as they used to be!! lol. But we can’t capture everything in a first draft, or we would be JK rowling by now!! lol. Thanks for taking the time to comment. Really REALLY appreciate it. Do you have solutions? Or is it purely editing it in for you?

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      1. Glad I could help! If only it were easy as Rowling makes it look. 😉
        No real solutions… I just keep editing and editing.
        Lately I’ve been trying to map things out. For example, I looked up a few floor plans for some different kinds of studio apartments so I could create Lilah’s apartment more easily. If I have the visual then it’s easier for me to describe.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Ok that’s a good idea though. I use Pinterest in much the same way as I’m visual. Thanks for the thoughts really do appreciate them 💖. How’s ur editing going? I’m about 10K through a solid edit, think I’ll do a once over for mistakes and then get it out to beta readers.

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      3. It’s going. I’ve been doing mostly research this month. Next month I plan to type up the next draft and do some extra edits as I go. Then I’ll take a break in April (Camp NaNo!) and then do another hard copy edit in May.
        It seems your edits are going well. I’m glad it’s moving along nicely. How do you send it out to beta readers? That’s something I would like to think about, but I don’t know how to go about it.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Your drive and determination always inspire me. I think it’s amazing how much you get done.

        Well I guess I have chosen beta readers based on different things I want from them. So like one person I know is amazing at description another emotion someone else pace or writes in my genre etc etc I guess a selection of 5 people I trust to be honest, know they have the free time to do it and importantly are writers. Haven’t asked them all yet but fairly sure they will help me out. I also beta read for people so often the favour just gets returned, although i take a bit longer than your average beta as I have so many responsibilities.

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      5. Aw, thank you. 🙂 The feeling is mutual, trust me. I’m always coming to your blog for help.
        I’ve seen plenty of people post on their blogs about looking for beta readers, but I don’t know if that would be the right way for me. I know plenty of writers through WordPress, but I don’t know their in depth skill levels or anything like that.
        I’m part of a local writers group where I am, but we only meet once a month so they’re only reading one part each month. And it’s only the second draft too. A lot of the kinks aren’t really worked out yet.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Aww, thanks Rachel ❤ I won't be posting on my blog for Beta readers for that exact reason. I want to know their skill level and depth of knowledge about writing. So I have chosen or will be choosing carefully. But I am choosing more because I want them to have specific skills to check for my weaknesses. Also, it's likely I'd repay the favour so that's always a consideration. The writers group might be a good place to start, but I am sure there are people on here you could use too.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I call “smile,” “laugh,” “grin,” etc. crutch words, and they are common problems for less experienced writers. So does Sasha. You’d be surprised how many writers limp by on them. One of the keys to defeating them is to learn to block dialogue (or create descriptive action to fill in between comments.” I’m glad Sash’s adding this and I hope writers pay attention because this is very important.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Passive voice is the bane of my existence. I write the way I talk and apparently, I enjoy saying two words when a single, more active, one will do.

    I put my last manuscript through one of those automated programs designed to pick up things like cliches, sentences ending with prepositions, and passive voice and it bled fuschia. Oh if only I could have a cult-like following like Jane Austen. She never let a think like pesky passive voice get her down.

    I used to consider myself a plotter. I have pages and pages of carefully throughout outlines. I know exactly how my books are supposed to end and how my characters are to behave. Unfortunately, my characters have a way of disagreeing with me. I compared my current WIP with its outline recently and have come to the conclusion that I am now completely off the reservation. My job now will be to get them roughly back on path while not sacrificing the organic story.

    My version of writer’s block is the blankness of my mind. Though the word blankness isn’t quite correct. It’s more like a dam or a stopped up drain. I know I want / need to write something. I can feel the words rattling around in the back of my mind, but the idea or spark to give them life is just out of reach.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey Allie, this made me giggle. I have been running my novel through those apps – hemmingway in particular and apparently I don’t do consistency! one chapter had like no passive, the next it was a total fucking massacre I was like WTF?! did I just take a passive pill and vomit the contents on the page?! FML.

      lol. couldn’t help but laugh a little. I tried the outline thing. fucked that right up too! I hate to admit it especially as its so against my Myers Briggs, but total pantser here!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My hubby enjoys picking on me now about it. He had no idea what passive voice was before I told him how frustrated I was with myself about it. Ever since then when I complain about anything, blog post didn’t get views, email was misunderstood, kids didn’t do as instructed he will tisk, tisk, you used too much passive voice. Gah!

        I am an outgoing introvert IN something or other with control issues. Not having my characters do as instructed is against all I stand for.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. lol, sounds like your hubby has a big sense of humour to me! :p interesting. I am an EN but I have a lot of introverted tendencies! Im just an extroverted thinker!! lol to your characters! I hate it when they misbehave, not because they’re being naughty but because it means I was wrong and they were right!! I hate bing wrong! :p

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  5. I can only say that at times… I look exactly like the pics.. lol! I have the best phrases and thoughts and it is pouring. But when I sit down it feels as if I accidentally I had poured it all out. LOL! When that happens then I simply start writing at any end and things get in motion again. It can be that I need to delete the first paragraph since it only helped me to get into it. I am talking about my Monday posts here. When I am writing on a book that barely happens.

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  6. Social media is a big help but comes with a flaw … time consumption. You see an add, then email it only to find out it is way over a budget you have. Then you’re depressed thinking should I spend that money for a review in a major magazine. Yikes, no!

    Writer’s block doesn’t exist for me and most likely it is because I haven’t been doing it that long. My mind is connected but using proper word order is not. One person tells me use said all the time another says use many different words for tags, quotes. I get both views but for me the story needs to unravel more simply so I don’t have to reread a sentence, except for if I just really liked it for its beauty or knowledge, not because I didn’t understand it.

    Thanks. Kim

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hear this so often, social media really is a time suck, IT SUCKS but is so good at the same time!

      Thanks for your problem, I shall add it to my list. I collect sentences that are beautiful, so that made me smile. So to clarify, you’re unsure about dialogue tags but also sentence order? and finally social media balance?

      Thank you for taking the time to comment ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Apart from what I said above in response to Lucy I hate it when I can’t do something new so fight myself to edit. I like editing but the new idea pulls me away. It’s classic procrastination. I get horribly frustrated I can’t plan ahead because I know I’m leaving holes that I’ll have to fill. My heart sinks if I have to research – until I start. I hate having to find alternatives to ‘said’ but I hate ‘said’. I love writing dialogue and have a major problem describing anything – what a character looks like, where they are so have to go back and fill it in and it always feels clunky. I’m never ever happy with description. I love smart arse complex multi compound words and have to pull them like bad teeth from my manuscripts. I love writing and it is a passion so much so that writing makes me feel awfully guilty – I could clean, cook, help out at the youth club, visit the local hospice, go on a march, anything except indulge myself by writing – having a dog at least gives me ‘me’ time to think about plots and stories but I haven’t learnt to walk and write yet. If I do I will probably kill myself. It’s why I take up challenges – I’m letting people down if I don’t do them so I get to write. I’m on the pantser end of the spectrum – if plotters are 10 and pantsers 1 I’m a 3. And if I said, no you can’t contact me you’d just ignore it, wouldn’t you?
    What are you actually planning, you sly little minx? That’s what I want to know.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. hahahaha oh Geoffle, how I love thee! this is a fab response, thank you kindly. I shall drop you a line off here and explain all the madness in my mind.

      I actually snorted out chocolate truffle at the walking writing killing comment!

      Also – new ideas are the bane of my life… like this one! :p FINISH A BOOK god damnit! :p

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Hey Sacha,

    My main problem is that there’s always a ton of stuff in my head that I know I have to do (all writing related, of course) and it can make it difficult to focus on one task. Using the same words (like Yvonne above), is also an irritation: rather, simply, something, often, then, although and so on.

    Helpful? No, I didn’t think so… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m not writing crazy just yet. I’m more of a novice blogger not know what i’m doing half the time… Anyhow, I thought that potentially not knowing or getting it right for your audience/demographic can be an issue? I’m totally new to all this and putting out feelers but I find that certain posts get way more attention than others. Maybe that could create a problem with wanting to write about something but it not being what your followers/readers want.

    As you can tell I write REALLY WELL! Haha, nice post though!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Interesting, Sacha. I’m an outliner, and though my outlines are flexible, the process has saved me from problems with story structure, pointless tangents, and plot holes. I do substantial world building and write lengthy character bios which touch on the personal arcs that will occur during a story – so that’s covered. I have numerous pesky problems that a revision and editing methodology addresses (with a little persistence and elbow grease).

    So what is my most irksome problem? Well, even with an outline, there are times in EVERY book where the words don’t come. It’s not writer’s block because I know what happens next. It’s just that the words are jammed up. Every sentence is a chore. Every cell in my body says, “let’s do something else!”

    For me, this would be the worst time to take a break. I always end my writing sessions on the positive. So what to do? I handle it by breaking the troublesome scene down into much smaller steps – almost a play by play covering every detail that needs to happen. Then I force myself to write it (pure unadulterated discipline). I take all those mini steps and connect them into a scene, just to get it down. I allow it to be crappy, knowing that I’ll come back to it. I can sigh with relief and take my break. When I come back to it, the hard part is over and revising is a breeze.

    Hope that helps. Let me know if you have questions 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, thank you for such a lengthy answer, you hero. ❤

      Interesting. I get that too – not block block, but like word muddle. I dunno how to describe it. For me, it's like burnout. And is the sole reason I work on more than one thing at one time. So that when that happens I can flit and return when I have had a break, usually does the trick. BUT there are also times when I can't do that, and you're right and you do just have to write through. I like to take a break around 30K usually. After 30K i'll swap projects and rest for a while then return feels like a good chunk then.

      Love your solution though. the breaking it down, genius. I might well come back to you on this 😀 thank you ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Hahaha! 😂 Got problems? Um letmethinkaboutthat…yes. Nothing original, I’m afraid. Self-doubt, imposter syndrome, perfectionism (I really do edit as I write – it’s awful), time management, connecting scenes, and in nonfiction I’m a conversational writer so I use too many “bad” words: like, very, that, awesome, etc. Also, I’m a pantser so issues with outlines. I’m sorry. Why am I writing? 😝

    Liked by 1 person

  12. okay I totally relate to the pics, yep. One problem i have which drives me crazy is that I have a problem linking scenes, I mainly write in the third person and trying to link paragraphs so readers will know what is going on is driving me up the proverbial. I cant keep making new chapters all the time, arghhhhhhhhhhhh. Coffee, Coffee, Coffee. lol hope that makes sense Sacha.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. There’s this story I write about and it’s just annoying how after finishing a chapter I just don’t like it. I always think of different ways to make it better and end up with a complete mess. I am a plotter, but a complicated one, due to my indecision.
    As for the writer blocks I think is just this. When you have lots of ideas but none seems good enough.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Might be a bit of confidence involved, but there’s always something I want to add. Might be because it’s more the story it’s a psychological thriller and I’m looking for the unexpected and unpredictable.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Hmmm, writing problems! As if you’re not busy enough, Sacha 😉

    So for me it’s characters taking over and pulling the story in a whole new direction. I had a big problem in my first couple of Ambeth books where my ‘bad guy’ turned out to be not so bad after all, and I had to find motivation for his character to do something awful (on which the series hinges). Even though I’ve tried plotting, it never works for me – the characters run away with the plot 🙂

    Still, I love that – it’s one of the things I enjoy most about writing. The problem lies in my then having to figure out where the new plot is going.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, well its just another idea for a book I’ve had. I like this problem cause I suffer with it too. Bloody characters. Thanks for your problem. What do you do to combat it? have you got any neat tricks for over coming the figuring of the plot out?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I find going for a long walk helps – the number of plot points I’ve figured out wandering around my neighbourhood! Or, a friend once told me, go to sleep on a problem, wake up with an answer. And that did work for me with my character who does a very bad thing – I woke up with his motivation. Otherwise, I think you just have to let the characters run with it – patterns will emerge eventually 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I feel overwhelmed when I start the agent search, then once I start on the list, I feel stymied at writing bios, query letters, and their various requirements. I am now making a folder with submission requirements and inclusions for each agent. It seems so complicated.

        Liked by 1 person

  15. Great survey Sacha. As I’m so short on time and trying to visit ‘my favourite’ blogs, I’m stopping by here. I’ll mention a few points. 1) Like Judith, social media is very distracting, but set in timed lots, it’s essential to building an author platform. 2) We all go through moments of writer’s block; what we do for it is different for many. For me, when I’m on my writing time and I blank out, tough luck, no looking for distractions, I’ll look at the damn wall until something comes, and eventually it always does. 3) I’m a plotser (that’s my word). I map out potential chapter headings and points I want to cover in those chapters. Then with pen in hand (yes, I write in longhand), I begin writing. I like to aim for 2000 words in a session, give or take. I don’t look back or edit while writing. And a little trick I learned from Stephen King is that I like to leave off my writing sessions with beginning a sentence in a new scene or chapter so I have a starting point and thoughts for the next session. I hope I’ve added something here to your list. 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Debbie. 😀 It’s for a another non fic project I want to do, although its in a queue! I’m working on another non fic as well as all the fiction ones. Something tells me I need to focus!

      Thanks for telling me your problems I will add them to my list. How do you know what 2000 written words looks like with no automated counting mechanism?

      I like that trick too – the leaving with a sentence – sometimes I leave a sentence half finished.

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      1. Simple Sach. The spiral notebooks I use allow me approximately 300 words per page (calculated by the lines and how many words I approximately fit in a line, give or take). 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. What? Seriously? I know young writers who do the same thing. It’s not prehistoric at all. If ever I get stuck or have to figure out a problem I do it on paper with my actual hand. I was going to do a PhD on this kind of stuff. It’s called Distributed Cognition, I wrote a post, if you’re interested – I don’t know if we were connected then. http://sachablack.co.uk/2015/04/13/the-best-kept-secret-to-improve-your-writing-writing-tips-19/ But basically, what the theory discusses is where the barrier is between thought and brain so to speak. I.e. is thought constrained by blood, skin and bone and confined to inside the skull. Or does it leak out and distribute. Say when you take a pen and you scrawl and it feels like your pen is going faster than your brain…. you know? Anyway, it’s interesting and is why writing by hand really works. Fascinating topic anyway. Sorry – I just totally geeked out! lol.

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      3. Love your ‘geekedoutness’ lol, is that a word? I’m off to check out this link you left. But in answer to your comment above, YES! that’s exactly what it feels like when I’m writing . . .the pen can’t keep up with my thoughts. This reminds me of a little trick I do when I write because of the fleeting thoughts ahead of my pen, I draw a line to make a margin for comments on the writing page and I enter thoughts that come to me as I’m writing which pertain to the writing but pointers that need discussion in following paragraphs. I do this so I remember what I needed to write about after my current thought.
        Another reason I don’t feel creative on the keyboard is because I’m compulsive when it comes to typos. If I’m speeding along with my thoughts, I’m going to make typos, I can feel them as I type and I stop and go back to correct, which would certainly hinder my process. 🙂 xo Love this discussion!!!! ❤

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      4. Haha, lets make it a word!

        Yep – I constantly have to write notes about random things that pop into my head because I will most certainly forget them if I try to just ‘remember it’ the annoying thing is, the sheer act of writing it down, means I don’t need the note in the first place I end up remembering it!

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  16. One of my major writing woes is a lack of depth. I feel that sometimes in my rush to get all my thoughts out on paper, my writing doesn’t go as deep as it should. I don’t know if this is a general problem or just me. Hope this helps 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This does help thank you so much. I have added it to my list 😀 😀 😀 Can I ask a clarification question. Is this emotional depth, or perhaps depth of world building or plot depth? Or something else? Thanks for taking the time to comment. I really appreciate it.

      Also, if you are interested, I just wrote a post on one method of increasing depth to your writing: http://sachablack.co.uk/2016/02/08/you-need-to-try-this-guaranteed-method-of-creating-depth-in-your-writing/

      no pressure, but thought I’d share.

      Like

      1. I read a few of the comments and someone would say I have this problem or that issue and you’d reply with win that’s great, or that’s a top horror! Just made me think if a doctor salivating over some grim medical condition. I think I must have eaten too much cheese.

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  17. Hi Sacha
    1. One woe I have is worrying that I have got the YA character voice right, in face each character voice right. Another is I have created a series and the debut book had character and plot constraints which i’m now having to work around in book 2. (On the other hand, this constraint can be a good thing, like writing in sonnet form, being creative within set limits.)
    2. No this doesn’t happen every time I write, only sometimes. Voice is a problem because I want authenticity. Also I have set book 2 in 1973 and earlier, so context has to be authentic too.
    3. I’ll keep you posted on whether I overcame it as I send book 2 to editor this week.
    4. I am in the middle, both plan and also follow my creative juices too. The second can be very exciting.
    5. Yes do contact. Through my blog or pjbyer@westnet.com.au
    Cheers
    PJ

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Pj, thanks for the comments, and the problems you are finding. I am adding them to my list, and I will come back to you in due course. Just editing another script at the minute, but this is on my to do’s now. Be interested to go a little deeper into these issues with you. Thank you ❤

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  18. PS Sacha the Synopsis book you recommended I bought, and it’s been fabulous. I’m entering a competition in Australia this month and I had to write a 200 word synopsis for entry form, no mean feat. And I did it!!
    Thank you for recommending her, she’s a Scottish last Nicole somebody? Don’t have her website in front of me, but she’s a very entertaining person.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ahh that’s Fab news. I am so glad you found her useful. I did, it revolutionised my synopsis. Yep, her name is Nicola Morgan, and yep she’s Scottish and properly hilarious! So glad you found the book helpful anyway. Good luck with the comp and let me know how you get on with it.

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  19. Writers block? Fortunately, I’ve never experienced it (well at least I don’t think I have because I don’t know what it means so I’ve no way of knowing). However, in answer to your question, I think it’s when a writer’s mind goes blank and the words just do not come out. I’ve read lots of advice about how to get over it from taking a break to drinking a bottle of wine and then writing. Whether they work I’ve no idea, but I did once write a short story after drinking a bottle of wine and I ended up freaking a lot of people out.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s a good thing, so many people get block and its horrific. Glad you don’t <3. I suspect block is different for everyone. Personally, I never run out of ideas, but I do get jammed up trying to write through them, I guess thats a kind of block in a sense?

      Hahahah, which story was that?

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  20. My current writing problem is that I keep changing my mind about the plot. So I have several versions of the same story and have been trying to merge them. Frankly it’s causing the famous BLOCK. In this case, it’s not lack of word flow, but rather, lack of direction. I get stuck in the decision of what will happen or how. It’s very frustrating. I will let you know when I’m done with this book and finally get to overcome this.

    This is the first time this happens. I think it’s because I’m writing a sequel for the first time, so I have certain givens I need to work with. Not sure is this will be my writing future. Perhaps I am overplotting. The first book in the series ran by sheer instinct, so I guess I’m somewhere in the middle. Not sure.

    Feel free to contact me about it if you like.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for letting me know 😀 really appreciate that you told me. I will be adding this to my list. It’s funny, cause I had this problem with the first book I wrote, and still now I am editing it, the timeline is changing and it makes it real difficult to get through those words.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. I am terrible at plotting, that’s my major problem. It seems to be my natural inclination to just write from the seat of my pants but the problem with that is I have to turn it into something that makes sense.. I’m editing at the moment and it’s driving me crazy. So from now on I’m going to at least have some sort of plot in mind before I spew out a lot of writing… lesson learnt. I hope..

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  22. Writer’s block is a form of writer’s depression, it’s the black dog of writing. When it strikes you have to kick it in the ass. So to remedy – pull yourself out of your hole, do whatever it takes to pull those words out before they bury themselves forever.

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  23. Bonus question first: I don’t suffer blankness. It’s the opposite; too many ideas!

    1. Getting started at downloading what’s in my imagination to form on the page. At first it’s stiff but like pulling taffy it loosens up. A second woe is judging time. I’m so bad at it.
    2. The stiff start leads me to procrastinate. Misjudging time leads me to procrastinate because I’m uncertain to say when it will be accomplished or feel bad if I miss something (like a deadline)
    3. I keep a calendar, use spreadsheets and print a weekly to-do list which usually makes me feel behind and guilty. Not a great solution in that regard, but tracking helps reduce my anxiety over time.
    4, I’m definitely a pantser, but I’m also a great plotter after pantsing.
    5. You can contact me anytime!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Charli, thank you for participating.

      hahaha, I love all the contradictions in this. You’re like me in some ways – specially the to do list. I write one every week too and when I get to the end of the week and it is inevitably NEVER complete I get annoyed!

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Hey Sacha
    At risk of kicking up a storm, writer’s block doesn’t exist. It’s an excuse to not sit down every day and write. Do I get bonus points? 😉
    My problem is differentiating different character dialogue without using cliched ways of speaking. Not an issue on every manuscript but sometimes I don’t feel I nail the different ways of speaking. I like dialogue, use lots of it, so I always want to make the characters distinctive. Still working on it, tried a few things but nothing conclusive yet.
    I pants, exclusively. Happy to chat more, just DM or email me.
    Cheers 🙂

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    1. Hey Michael, thanks for commenting. Think we chatted a bit about writers block on twitter – but for me its a stick rather than block – like when I burn out on fiction and have to swap to non fiction!

      Thanks for adding your problem, I have added it to my list – will come back in due course.

      Like

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