Elizabeth Esther

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Elizabeth Esther

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Born
in Fullerton, The United States
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Member Since
December 2016


Elizabeth Esther is the author of "Girl at The End of the World: my escape from fundamentalism in search of faith with a future." A longtime, award-winning blogger, Elizabeth's other articles have appeared in TIME, Christianity Today, Religion News Service, Mothering Magazine, OC Family and The Orange County Register. Elizabeth is a mother of five and lives in Southern California with her family.

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Elizabeth Esther I deal with writer's block by doing something other than writing. If I try and "push through" the writer's block, disaster strikes. My heart and mind…moreI deal with writer's block by doing something other than writing. If I try and "push through" the writer's block, disaster strikes. My heart and mind freeze up and the words that come out are usually angry, annoyed or anxious. I've learned that I have to give myself breaks because writing is hard work. Taking a walk in the hills or by the beach always relaxes my mind. I'm also a big believer in naps. I take a nap every single day. It cools down my brain and prevents overheating. I've also discovered that simple, repetitive hand-work that I can do without thinking is very soothing to my mind. While I was writing my second book I crocheted a bunch of simple, wagon-wheel coasters. Nothing complex. I found great relief in the simple repetition of crocheting.

Another way I deal with writer's block is by setting daily time limits for myself. When I'm writing a book, I work for 4 hours each day and try to write "2,000 Good Words" during that time. But I stop after 4 hours. If I haven't written 2,000 Good Words, I don't force it. Maybe I need to outline or free write or brainstorm. Sometimes I doodle or create a visual aid of what I'm trying to write. I keep lots of loose leaf paper, pens in different colors, drawing paper, markers and even paints nearby. There are times when I've literally "doodled my way out" of writer's block.

My most important tip for dealing with writer's block is to stop at a point where I'm excited to start the next day. This gives me a head start on the next day's writing because I know what I'm going to write next and I'm eager for it.

When all else fails, I take two weeks off. This is only for Very Bad Writer's Block. I have to completely step away, not even take a sneak peek at my manuscript. Maybe I'll let myself carry a little notebook in my purse to scribble down a thought (during the writing of my second book, I just used the "Notes" app on my iPhone). But I give myself a full-stop break. For me, forcing the writing to happen only backfires.

There is a caveat, here, though: I won't let myself take a break for longer than two weeks. After two weeks, I start losing writing muscle. I get sort of flabby, so to speak. Deadlines stress me out but they also keep me focused. Knowing I have a deadline keeps me from wandering too far off the writing path.

Wow, I've gone on quite a bit, here. I'll stop now. Apparently I don't have writer's block when I'm writing about writer's block! :)(less)
Average rating: 4.01 · 1,925 ratings · 276 reviews · 3 distinct worksSimilar authors
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More of Elizabeth's books…
“We were taught to share at the expense of our own well-being. We came to associate self-care and self-love with selfishness.”
Elizabeth Esther, Spiritual Sobriety: Stumbling Back to Faith When Good Religion Goes Bad

“Disassociation. It is a word I have heard before but never in reference to that mind trick I had used to cope. That trick isn't a figment of my imagination. It was real. It had a name. And if the coping mechanism was real, it means what I have experienced was real too.”
Elizabeth Esther, Girl at the End of the World: My Escape from Fundamentalism in Search of Faith with a Future

“Shame Brain happens when we see our mistakes as our identity. It’s the difference between “I made an error” and “I am an error.” Shame Brain can also take root when we allow others to blame us for things that are not our responsibility—”
Elizabeth Esther, Spiritual Sobriety: Stumbling Back to Faith When Good Religion Goes Bad

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