Writer’s Block — A Blank Slate

When I travel around the country trying to sell a book or two I am frequently asked, “Do I ever get writer’s block and how do I overcome it?” I try to explain how I use editing the work I’ve done the day before to get me in that day’s flow. It has worked so far with my novels.

I can’t say the same for writing over two thousand morning meditations. When my morning meditation still leaves me with a blank slate, I go to books I’m reading or the list of quotes I keep for inspiration, but somedays the slate remains blank.

I suspect part of this morning’s trouble is the events in Pittsburg, pipe bombs in the mail, airplane crashes, and ugly responses to such events that surround us. People try to convince me that time’s have never been worse, but I’ve lived too long to believe that is true. My parents went through the great depression, World War II, and the Korean War. My high school friends went to Vietnam, ¬†and we lived through the Kennedy assassinations and that of MLK, Jr. The list could go on and on, hate and horrific acts by humans have been with us from the beginning of time, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

But to say what I just said is no solace, is not a proper response, and is totally inadequate. I think why I am a blank slate and why many of us are struggling is because we want to respond, we want to repair, and we want to tone down the rhetoric. That’s desire itself is encouraging. So what do we do?

I wish one of my readers would propose a solution, but that’s not fair. If I were to suggest one thing it would be to act out of compassion, love, and kindness in a way you’ve never done before. Do something for someone you don’t know in a way you never thought possible. Reach out to someone to break down a barrier. Maybe it is fair to ask you write in about “baby steps” you have taken today, and I will do the same. The baby step may even be encouraging someone else to do the same, or spending some time with someone who hasn’t lived through a period of hate to help them get past this time. All I know is hate is never the right response to hate. It only fans the fire.

 

About the author

Webb Hubbell, former Associate Attorney General of the United States, is an author and lecturer. His novels, When Men Betray, Ginger Snaps, and A Game Of Inches, are published by Beaufort Books and are available online, in your local bookstore, or you can order autographed copies at webbhubbell.com. When Men Betray won one of the IndieFab awards for best novel in 2014. Ginger Snaps Won the IPPY Awards Gold Medal for best suspense/thriller.

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