Hitting the “writing-wall”

Several years ago, I anticipated the need to be a better writer. Putting down on paper good stories, posts, jokes, speeches.
It started with 750words.com and the idea that one should write three pages of text without sharing it. Doing this exercise daily, it didn’t work at first until I committed to the routine last August 2018. At first, logging 750 words a day was the exception. Progressively, it became a quotidian habit.

In practice, writing so much every day is a challenge. I don’t live an exciting life to the point of writing three pages. To cope with this, I added “the three things that I am grateful for today” and “what I learned today.” When done correctly, that takes up to 1/5 of the entire note – freeing me a little from the commitment.
The rest of the note could be only blabbering about how I have nothing to write on.

Later, I decided to up the stakes and commit myself to write a blog article per week. As an introvert, not particularly creative, and not English speaker I was starting a solid gamble. But building on the momentum with my 750 words notes, it felt like writing a 300~350 words post a week was doable.

I set some ground rules to build my comfort zone:
– First, the format has to be simple. No research, only opinion pieces. Short posts, one idea max.
– Second, the first four posts would never get published. I redacted them to get into the habit.
– Third, the following four posts would get published but not shared. So no public shame in case of poor quality.
I have been able to write 20+ posts consistently, so I guess the gamble paid off. You can find the latest ones on carnet.cc.

This morning, I struggle with finding the right angle to write my note. I had several ideas to begin with, but none of them converted correctly. How frustrating to be so close yet so far.
Strangely enough, I eventually did the one thing I was used to when nothing comes to mind. The solution to breaking the writing-wall hit me! I could replicate what I do with my 750 words notes when creativity runs dry. I would write about the difficulties of writing.
And this note is how I finished my weekly goal 🙂

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Matthieu Bodin

Matthieu Bodin is an entrepreneur and community builder. After 9 years in Hong Kong and Shanghai, he moved to Amsterdam with his wife and baby girl!