Thursday, May 15, 2008

Is it writer's block or procrastination?

An article on Slate teases out the difference, touching on the no-show follow-ups of Ralph Ellison and Truman Capote:

Of course, given that procrastination carries the stigma of sloth and disorganization, it may seem uncharitable to ascribe the dithering disease to the blocked but feverishly ambitious writer—surely, if he weren't truly stuck, he wouldn't be finding new Facebook groups to join instead of composing his chef-d'oeuvre? On the other hand, creative-writing instructors often start class with a five-minute automatic-writing exercise for a good reason: There is always something to be written.

As I've mentioned before, I love what Richard Bausch once said in an interview about being blocked: "Lower your standards and keep on going."

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