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Do You Ever Get a Life-block?

By 11/01/2024January 28th, 2024Featured
What about you? Do you ever want to just stick with yourself? Has life-block ever been a thing for you? Do you have advice for me?

When it comes to authors, a writer’s block is a very common topic of conversation. But what do you do when you’re blocked with life? 

I seem to be able to come up with fiction whether it is brainstorming a new book, writing a small piece of flash or editing my novel in progress. Where I’m stuck is with daily chores, fixing appointments, getting repairs done. Basically, adulting.
 
The end of the year blues have clearly continued into the new year. All I really want to do is go off on a writing retreat someplace and finish all the manuscripts I have on hand. Just close all the doors and windows, and curl into my writing cave–pretending real life doesn’t exist.
 
This has been a long time coming, because I’ve been working non-stop the past few years pushing past the limits of lack of sleep and exhaustion. My body simply doesn’t want to do stuff it doesn’t want to, and though it’s okay to do walks, I have to drag it to places I have no desire to go, and it’s NOT fun. My time away in Malaysia was excellent with food and friends, but for an introvert, I needed time to recuperate even from that.
 
I’ve recently begun reading My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh, and I envy the protagonist the privilege of just taking sleeping pills for months and sinking into an adulting break. I’ve begun making lists of things to do and postponing them from one day to another, but one some days I miraculously get some of the stuff done. I live in hope, I guess.
 
Today one of the things on my list was this post, so here goes!
 
What about you? Do you ever want to just stick with yourself? Has life-block ever been a thing for you? Do you have advice for me?
 

My literary crime novels, The Blue Bar and The Blue Monsoon are on Kindle Unlimited now. Add to Goodreads or snag a copy to make my day ! And if you’d like to read a book outside the series, you can check out You Beneath Your Skin.  Find all info about my books on my Amazon page or Linktree.

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Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her literary crime thriller series, the Blue Mumbai, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency. Both The Blue Bar and The Blue Monsoon were published in 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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36 Comments

  • ImekWrites says:

    Life does struggle with you when you want to take that break… but in the end you’l be glad and better to have taken your much needed rest for refueling.

    • DamyantiB says:

      Wise words. I couldn’t agree more – although pushing ourselves to rest can be a challenge, it’s always worth it in the long run!

  • Sonia Dogra says:

    Hi Damyanti. I wish I could afford life block. Instead I’ve just gone on a random social media block after a very difficult personal year, that continues its glorious run into 2024. Just dropped in to say hello and wish you all the best for the coming year. I am trying to get back slowly.

  • hilarymb says:

    Hi Damyanti – I seem to be doing what I need to do, but not a lot more – still it’s ok – as I’m ok … and I’m not ‘mucking’ anyone about … I have started blogging again – and will go along slowly, despite a few things that I volunteer for – which have escalated recently. I’m just glad I started blogging, just glad I’ve met so many wonderful blogging friends … and thus opened up my eyes to other ways of life – both via their blogs, via their interaction, and via their countries – cheers and all the best for 2024 … could be busy for you – Happy New Year – all the best – Hilary

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      You do so much for so many, Hilary, and I always enjoy your blogs. Your kindness and compassion and love for life shines through. Take good care, and have yourself a wonderful new year!

  • dgkaye says:

    I’m well-versed in ‘life block’, so I hear you. Yes, a tempting thought to run away to a reading and writing retreat. But whether you travel or not, you need a break from it all. Be kind to yourself. Living a little and resting are important. <3

    • Damyanti Biswas says:

      Yes, I’ve been trying to do the kindness to self thing but it only makes my deadlines loom harder. This summer, for sure. I’ll get to take a few days off in April or May.

  • When I’m following a story developing in my mind and have to do background research before writing I like to be alone and undisturbed.

    • DamyantiB says:

      I know what you mean, it really helps to be able to block out the outside world and just narrow my line of vision to what’s on the page or screen.

  • Debbie D. says:

    You’re not alone! I’ve retreated to my laptop lately, largely ignoring real life, except for the basic necessities. It’s winter here, my tolerance for cold is low, along with my energy and enthusiasm to get out and do things. This too shall pass, as it always does. May you find some renewed vigour as well!

    • DamyantiB says:

      Thank you for the wise words and much-needed encouragement, Debbie! May the weariness of the winter months be over before you know it.

  • Mick Canning says:

    I’m having a life block now. The weather is cold and grey and miserable, and I just feel like curling up somewhere for a few months.

  • I’d like to stop adulting, but someone has to bring home the dough.
    I did take a week around Christmas and avoided a lot of adult stuff. It was relaxing. Gave me the energy to get back into the groove. Sounds like you’ve just been out of the groove for too long.

    • DamyantiB says:

      I’m glad you found the time to take a break from the worldly worries and adulting business! The Christmas and end-of-year period is a nice time to reset and get ready to jump back into things. Hoping to find my groove sooner rather than later!

  • arlene says:

    When mom was still with us, I always tried balancing taking care of her, do the everyday household chores and visits to my doctors. There is so much time on my hands now but I miss her. She left us almost four months ago.🥰

    • DamyantiB says:

      So deeply sorry for your loss, Arlene. I’ve been weighing my words, wondering what to say, but no words are enough in such circumstances. Sending you peace and love and strength. Our parents leave such craters in our lives when they leave.

      • arlene says:

        That is so true, Damyanti but I have accepted everything. She was 94 when she died. Thank you so much.🥰

  • I’ve given up adulting for writing. I expect it will bite me in the butt at some point.

  • Life is a harsh mistress. I remind myself often that that others around the world would give their left hand to be right in the situation I am in no matter how stressed I am. As my best friend, Sandra, often told me: you will be surprised what you can do when you have no other choice but to do it. Give yourself permission to be human and be as kind to yourself as you would be to a tired friend. One day I know you will visit my blog again. 🙂

    • DamyantiB says:

      So hard to let go and do what you can when you can, when the time calls for it. Life needs to be lived, but we also need downtime–I’m trying to teach myself that. I’ve been visiting your blog, and sharing it on twitter–blogspot won’t let me comment these days–I’m working on fixing that 😊

  • I remember times in the past as I tried to do everything–work fulltime, parent fulltime, be perfect–I’d suddenly get this frayed feeling that told me I was full. To Stop. I guess that was mostly kid-driven because it doesn’t happen much anymore. You’ll get through it, I have no doubt!

    • DamyantiB says:

      Knowing that you managed to get through it is definitely reassuring, and I’m glad to hear that it happens to you less frequently nowadays! Being stuck in the thick of a writer’s block, life-block, or any kind of burnout can be such an overwhelming feeling. Thank you for the encouragement!

  • I feel this sometimes, too! And it’s so hard to press pause on things when you have a lot of responsibilities, or a lot of future things depend on the work you do now. I wish I had more/better advice, but I find that if I take the time to sit down and think/write out what it is I need to make the space to rest, then that makes it easier to set boundaries on my time. It might feel like a waste of time at first, but it saves time in the long run!

    Also, I’ve been meaning to read My Year of Rest and Relaxation; I’ve heard good things, so I hope you continue to enjoy it!

    • DamyantiB says:

      I completely agree. Adulting is a full-time job! Thank you for the advice — that’s definitely something I’m working on these days. Finding ways to organize my time is one of my biggest challenges, and I usually end up getting all muddled, but I know it should be a priority. Here’s hoping I finally get around to it this year. And I hope you enjoy My Year of Rest and Relaxation!