Category Archives: Healthy Writers

Blocked or Lazy….Same thing Really…

It’s been a while since I have written for this blog. Health issues have kept me from doing any serious work and now I am just getting to a point where I can jump back into the deep end of the writing pool. I apologize for my absence.

One of the things that I have been dealing with since my butt hit the chair again in procrastination at it’s worse. Being in poor health taught me the joys of sitting on the couch binge watching television shows that I would not have otherwise watched…Wynonna Earp is really good by the way…. Getting back into the chair has been painful enough with the heath issues making it physically hard to do BUT getting motivated has been equally as tough. I found myself last week declaring to a friend that I was “blocked”…I’m fibbing…I’m just being lazy.

When you have had your writing interrupted from any reason it is often hard to get back into the flow of things. Writing means you have to show up and if you have spent any time at all on a couch in a haze of pain pills and television it can get even harder. The easy way is to tell yourself, “one more week and I’ll be ready” but the long and short of it is…it’s now or never.

My health issues are not resolved yet but the writing is helping me focus on the work rather than the pain. I am still finding myself on the couch but now it is with my computer with the television off. I said all of that to say this…if you have a life issue that takes you away from your writing, don’t allow it to do so for very long because the longer you stay away…the harder it is to get back. If you have to write in smaller blocks but write because it is a muscle that needs to be exercised. As for me…I’m back and I have to tell you…I really have missed you all!


© The Writer’s Advice, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


OMG Funny!










I found this hilarious and had to share it…..


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Brake for Stressed Writers!

stressedLife has gotten overwhelming. The summer is over, preparations for Fall and Winter have begun, the kids are back in school so lunches, getting up on time and homework are added to your to-do list, winter brings extra clients who had been too busy having fun during the summer to work AND somewhere in there you have to write. Sound familiar? It does to me…it’s basically my life.

My summer this year was busy, which is weird because my summers are usually not busy writing wise. I am a winter writer, meaning I do my best work when it is raining or snowing outside. Summers are for trying to keep up with the kids and grandkids. This year my world went wonky and I had clients like crazy so needless to say I am a little stressed going into the Fall and Winter months not having had a break this year.

So how does one keep themselves from stressing when their “other” writing life (client work) appears to have completely taken over? First off, breathe…remember that you get to do what you love no matter how stressful it is. I talk to friends who have jobs they hate…so I am grateful for my work all the time. Second, schedule…I can’t stress how important it is to schedule your writing. I’m not talking about clients, I’m talking about yours. If I don’t I simply push my own work aside in favor of the almighty buck….don’t do that. Your own writing is the balance you seek grasshopper… (Just dated myself there)

Finally, don’t give in to the stress. I know that I am capable of this and then some. I can have a total work stoppage if I allow the stress to take over. That’s when you will find me on the couch with a bag of Cheetos watching reruns of Castle. You have to pace yourself and see each project as its own world; if you don’t you will get overwhelmed. So remember, schedule and then write because while the money for all those other jobs is great, not having balance will ensure that absolutely nothing gets done.



© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


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Don’t Write through the Pain

Last week I was stricken with a pain in my stomach that was unlike any I had ever experienced before. It was so bad that it actually drove me to the floor at one point. An ambulance ride later I found myself sitting in a hospital staring emergency surgery in the scalpel. I fussed with the docs…yes it hurt, yes I wanted it fixed BUT I have so much work to do! I think there were points when at least one of those doctors wanted to throw things at me because, as she put it, I was being ridiculous.

After the “you-have-no-choice-because-you-could-die” speech from not one, but six, surgeons I finally gave in and let them cut me open. By Friday the surgery was over and I was already being a pain in the ass because I wanted to go home and get back to work. The nurses would sweetly pat me on the head and smile, nodding that I would be able to go home soon. They humored me because they knew that when I did finally get home I was not going to just hit the keyboard. They knew I would be in pain, my body trying to heal itself. They also knew that I would just have to see for myself…..they were right.

It’s been 5 days since the surgery and I am slowly getting back into it. I complain to my spouse about not feeling up to task and I’m told, geez, it’s only been five days. I know that I need to allow my body to heal but I also feel the giant tug of responsibility towards my readers so I have fought every step of the way. That is, until this morning…

This morning my 13 year old daughter hugged my head as I sat at my desk trying to find a comfortable position. She giggled as I twisted this way and that, grimacing and making the noises of a small hurt animal. She waited until I had given up on comfort and said, “you almost died…I think your readers would understand if you took a week off. Besides, how are you going to write anything good if between every word you are writing, ow, ow, ow…..?” I called her a smart butt and sent her off for her first day of school but then I had to admit…she’s right.

We writers really tend to push ourselves because we work for the hardest boss on the planet…ourselves. We think that the whole world is going to fall apart if we aren’t working forgetting that we are the ones actually creating that world. I have to take the time this week to heal and I would encourage any of you who get sick to do the same. Winter is coming and cold and flu season is headed our way so even if you don’t find yourself staring at a bunch of masked men and women with sharp instruments there still may be times when you will need to allow your body to heal…do it. You owe it to your writing.




© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


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Sometimes Giving Up is a Good Thing


How many times in your life have you heard someone say…”don’t give up”? We literally get beaten over the head with the concept of not giving up from the time we are kids. Well I’m here to tell you, that advice isn’t always a good thing…sometimes there are things that you just need to…well…give up.

1. People Pleasing – OMG give this one up. Let’s face it, you really can’t please everyone and it is a crap shoot trying to figure out which ones will approve and which ones will disapprove. It’s not worth it to try and write your stories in such a way that everyone will be happy…in fact, it isn’t even possible. The key is to write what make you happy and then hope that there are others who will also find your work enjoyable. And for Pete’s Sake don’t allow some editor somewhere to try and make you write their version of your story either. (and there are ones out there who will try)

2. Stop doubting yourself – Definitely give this up. Self-doubt will only lead to a work stoppage that you can’t fix. Self-doubt is paralyzing. We will all tussle with it from time to time but the key is to not let it over take you. Acknowledge that you are feeling insecure and then move on.

3. Negative thinking – While this should be a no-brainer many of us do it without even realizing it. I am a big fan of positive thinking. If you continue to tell yourself that you will fail…even in your mind…you will.

4. Fear of failure – “Nothing ventured, nothing gained”….truer words have never been spoken. As a writer, failure means one thing…you have to begin again. Don’t let the fear of failing stop you from trying.

5. Criticizing yourself – Yeah…give this up right now. We have enough folks out there waiting to pounce on us for what we do…don’t add yourself to the fray.

6. Saying yes when you mean no – Writers, by nature, are people pleasers….stop that. You have enough on your plate without trying to do stuff that you really don’t want to do. I get caught up in this all the time whether it’s agreeing to watch the grandkids or stopping to do something for one of the children. It’s okay to say no when you are working. This tends to be a huge problem for those of us who work from home….remember to have that boundaries conversation with the family.

7. Procrastination – We have had this conversation over and over again. If you want to be a successful writer you have to give up procrastinating. Putting it off means it doesn’t get done….that’s all.

There are other things that you have to give up as a writer as well but these are the 7 biggies. It’s okay to give these things up; in fact your writing life depends on it.



© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.



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Being a Healthy Writer makes for Healthy Writing


My life changed this year because I almost lost it. At the beginning of the year I discovered that I had a health problem. During a routine doctor’s appointment to address a gallbladder that had gone rogue they discovered that I had “places” on my stomach. A month later I was at the University of Washington and they were removing both my gallbladder and most of my stomach. I almost died during surgery and the recovery was harrowing at best. I had to relearn how to eat and the food I could eat changed drastically. Today I eat approximately ¼ cup of food at a time and I have to watch what I do eat. But…I am recovering.

I said all that to say this…the surgery turned out to be a blessing in disguise. I have always been overweight. I was thin as a child but adulthood brought on too many choices and I ended up way overweight. Having a job as a writer didn’t help because I was always behind a desk on my kester; I was doomed to gain weight as many writers tend to be. Before my surgery I was diabetic and on high blood pressure meds as well as 15 other pills daily; I was a mess. As of today I have lost 74 lbs., am no longer diabetic and take no meds at all. I feel amazing.

There is something else that has improved on top of my health….my writing. Wait! Hear me out…because it is true. I have more energy and I feel better so when I sit down to write I can concentrate on my writing instead of all the aches and pains. I am also not preoccupied with what I am having for lunch or stuffing my face with junk food as I shift through the crumbs on my desk. Being healthier has also made my writing healthier and that I wouldn’t trade for the world.

Now I am not advocating having your stomach removed but I am offering this piece of advice…if you aren’t healthy, work on that. I know it is a struggle, it was my own struggle for years, but in the end it is worth it. I am a better writer because I am healthier and that makes me happy, which in turn, makes me want to write more; hence…I’m better all the way around. Take baby steps if you have to but realize that what we do for a living sort of fights against us to begin with so it is important to get on top of it now. Go for a walk, join a gym…do whatever it takes to get healthier. After all won’t do you any good to write that book if you aren’t around to see anyone enjoy it.



© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


Posted by on May 14, 2023 in Healthy Writers, Writing


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Spring Cleaning Time – Throw out the Crap

Spring is a time of renewal for the planet but let’s be honest, for us writers it is a time of complaining about having to clean out your office. I know at my house I get this look about this time of the year that translates to “get all that paper and crap out of there – it’s a fire hazard”.

Over the winter we writers tend to horde. I know for me personally I come up with all sorts of ideas in the dead of winter and I half write them all down. I have to be honest; I do a lot of brainstorming to get out of other things like shoveling snow or running the kids back and forth in the freezing rain. I “suddenly” get an idea that I “just have to get down on paper”; go figure that still works after over 10 years…yeah me. But now that it is Spring it is time to sit down and rummage through all those “ideas” and see which ones work and which ones are just stupid.

Although I hate doing this myself, it is an important part of the writer’s year. If we don’t take the time to weed through our winter slush pile we can get overwhelmed by the large stack of potentials. I take great care in going through mine because sometimes, despite why a story idea was created, it turns out good. I have pulled out some real jewels but I have also pulled out some real dogs.

So take a moment while the sun is out and tackle that slush pile before making your writing excuses for the summer. You never know, there may be something in there that gets you really excited about writing even if the sun is out.



© The Writer’s Advice, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.


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