We all know the feeling. We sit at a desk with our computers or notebooks, ready to write all the words, except the words aren’t coming. It feels as if there is a mental block stopping you from writing. It’s uncomfortable — sometimes painful — to watch the blinking cursor, mocking your helplessness. This feeling can continue for days, weeks, months, even years.
“Oh, I would totally write if I ever had the time,” said many non-writers.
That’s why I call them non-writers.
“Ho hum, I have nothing else to do with my life so I’ll write a book,” said no writer ever. In fact, some writers find this excuse insulting to the sacrifices they made to accomplish their writing goals.
Here’s the hard truth: Nobody has time for writing. We all have jobs, hobbies (which don’t include writing), families, friends, social engagements, and life requirements like sleep, food, doctor appointments, and carpools. So how are books written?
What are Tropes?
Tropes are cliches, common themes, or trends in books.
Take the murderous butler, for example. So many detective thrillers have used ‘the butler was the killer all along’ plot twist, it has become a comedic gag. There’s also the ‘she woke up and realized it was all a dream’ cliche. As far as I know, Alice in Wonderland was the first book to do this. In my opinion, this trope is lazy storytelling; the author couldn’t think of a good ending, so he says it was all a dream. Yet this trope caught on to other stories, unfortunately.
The beginning is always hard, especially for writers. We tend to spend our days thinking about writing, and dreaming about being alone with our computers or notebooks. When we finally sit down with a cup of coffee and position our hands over the keys, we write… nothing. We stare at the cursor, willing the words to appear. The idea is clear in our minds, but we can’t describe it.