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Cream background with photo of woman holding her head in her hands. Text: Writing Blues? Just show up.

Writing Blues? Just Show Up

When you have the writing blues, just show up to each writing session.

Some books come to me so easily. I sit down and, before I know it, I’ve written an entire chapter. I love the characters, I know where the story is going, and best of all, I write the book quickly.

Then there’s the book I’m currently working on. I’ve been eagerly anticipating writing these characters. However, this book has not been easy to write. I sit down and grind out each sentence. Each scene takes forever to get on the page. It’s hard to avoid the writing blues.

I love the characters. I spend time after every writing session thinking about where the story is going. But this book has a mind of its own, and the writing has been very, very slow.

I will have it done before my deadline. And I’ll be pleased with the result. It’s the getting there that’s hard.

Every writer I know struggles with some aspect of writing. It might be the first draft. It might be revising. It might be knowing when the book is finished.

In order to get through the struggle and emerge victorious, we only have to do one thing. Show up.

Just show up.

Keep opening the manuscript. Keep putting words on the page. Keep thinking about the plot. Keep making adjustments where they’re needed.

Keep going.

When you show up day after day, month after month, nothing can stop you. Not a rogue plotline. Not characters behaving badly. Not the daunting task of revising a messy manuscript.

We’re writers. We take it one day at a time.

Struggling to keep your writing sessions? Read the section on Procrastination in “The 3 Ps of Time Management.” We can succeed!!

What part of the writing process gives you the most trouble?


Reminder: I have two books in stores this month! You can pick up a copy of THE COWBOY’S LITTLE SECRET and Debbie Macomber’s YOURS AND MINE (My book, HERS FOR THE SUMMER, is a bonus story!!) at book retailers near you!

Jill Kemerer is a Publishers Weekly bestselling author of heartwarming, emotional, small-town romance novels often featuring cowboys. She hopes to encourage readers through her books the way so many books have encouraged her. Jill's essentials include coffee, caramels, a stack of books, her mini-doxie, and long walks outdoors. She resides in Ohio with her husband and two almost-grown children. For more information, visit her website,

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Good points, Jill. I’m really burned out from my last two projects, into which I put everything I had. It is hard to get going again. I fall back on the old (to writers) adage: Plumbers don’t get “plumber’s block,” truck drivers don’t get “driver’s block,” etc. They show up.
    Kathy Bailey

    1. All good points, Kathy–we write! But I understand the burnout. I recently read a book by a famous marathoner, where he urges anyone who has pushed through a tough project to take a few weeks to celebrate and let your body (or in our case, our creativity) to rest. He didn’t stop running–he cut back on his workouts. He found himself refreshed and ready to go when it was time to get serious about the next marathon. We need those fallow times, too.

  2. Such timely advice for me this morning. My current WIP is eyeballing me as I prepare for a three day weekend focused on writing. For some reason this story keeps wanting to rush the big plot points. I typically like to write the scenes in order, but I may just give in and write the scenes desparate to get out and then smooth out the story by injecting other scenes as they come.

    This post is a great reminder to just write. My husband is good at reminding me of that too. Thanks for sharing this with us!

    1. Karen, I’m all about experimenting! Plus, some books just come to us differently. Try this way and if it’s horrible, you never have to do it again! Bless you on your writing weekend!

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