So, usually, writers think that writer’s block is their greatest enemy. I mean, what’s a writer without the ability to write? For good reason, writer’s block has become the demon that haunts all writers’ nightmares. But did you think that’s the only thing that goes bump in the writer’s night? Did you think it was the worst thing? Because THINK AGAIN.
Now you’re laughing at me, right? Because writer’s block is the very stuff nightmares are made out of for a writer. The idea that you just can’t pick up a pencil or tap some keys and make words come out and form stories because all the sudden your imagination is barren and you’re stuck worrying for days and an weeks and months if maybe you’ve finally killed your brain and there is just no more creativity to be had. The very thought makes life a lot less worth living. But, if the past couple of weeks have taught me anything, there is most certainly something worse.
At least, with writer’s block, there are things you can do to help yourself. You take a break, curse your characters some, and swear you’ll never write them again if they don’t hurry up and behave. There are writing exercises you can do, or it just gives your fingers a well deserved break. Good things can come out of writer’s block if it doesn’t drive you to drown in despair first.
But imagine not being able to do ANYTHING. Imagine having ideas that you want to write but not being able to. Your laptop is sitting right on your desk, your notebook is resting right in your drawer—right there, all in reach. But you CAN’T WRITE.
Welcome to the nightmare that is carpal tunnel.
This had been my nightmare for the past two weeks. Luckily for me, all it took was a few weeks of resting in an arm brace for me to get right back at it again. Not going to lie, certain things still hurt like all get out, but there was only so much time I could take away from my writing before I went nuts. There are few forms of torture so agonizing as being able to touch your keyboard and smooth your notebook pages but not being able to tap the keys or curl your hand around a pen. You start wondering just what you did in a past life to deserve this, right before the laptop and notebook start laughing at you and your pain. The kicker is that carpal tunnel comes from writing and typing too much, so clearly you’ve been interrupted right in the middle of this great flow of creativity that is now being forcibly stopped up. It makes your head want to burst. All you want to do is sleep because you HURT and hopefully when you wake up enough time will have passed that you don’t hurt anymore.
Now, granted, there are some things you can do. For instance, I have speech recognition software on my computer, so there was that. I wasn’t completely dead in the water, no matter how I felt. But, for me, speaking aloud doesn’t allow me the same connection with my subconscious that produces words in the perfect conduit onto the page. It’s something, but it’s not enough. And there’s nothing you can do about it.
So there you are, my fellow writers. There’s a new nightmare for your dreams, a new scary story to tell around your campfires. I hope you sleep well tonight.