What It’s Like To Be Burnt Out and Have Writer’s Block

This is probably an article I never thought I’d write given I’ve been launching articles in a never ending barrage, but in late May, I put out my last article and spent the entire month of June on break from article writing. I went from having a lot of ideas to write, to having too many ideas, only for it to culminate into an accidental burn out. Have you ever seen the meme of Patrick where he has a burnt hole in the back of his head after “Chum is Fum” and “Fum is Chum”? That was basically me in a nutshell. Now I do have a bunch of ideas in the woodworks, but I need to slow it down by a lot so this doesn’t happen again.

But for some people who don’t know what writer’s block is, I’ll explain.

If you’ve done an essay of some kind in school whether it be for class as a standard essay, had to do an essay on the fly on a test, or had to work on a 3-5 page essay project and you got suddenly stuck, that’s writer’s block. It’s when you know what you want to write, but you don’t know how to write it. Similar to me, I knew what to write, but I really didn’t know, since I had too many ideas. As of this article, there’s about five or six unfinished projects I’m working on, one that has been in the works since last month. And I know that there’s probably gonna be people who are gonna say that I should’ve taken a break after finishing up the Console Wars article series, and I’ll admit, I probably should’ve taken that break. Having writer’s block isn’t the most fun thing in the world, especially when you have to have ideas on what to write on within a weekly basis. While all my focus was on Console Wars from the end of January to around the beginning of May when it ended, I noticed that I was having trouble doing other articles that I would normally focus on, since I usually tend to do articles that are a bit different than the norm. And after I did my most recent article, my brain completely shut down. I had and still have no idea what to write, what article to start with and which ones to finish, and unfortunately while it’s a good thing to have a lot of ideas, it can also be a bad thing because you don’t know where to start and which idea to write about. While I’m glad I had a bunch of ideas to write about, having too many ideas unfortunately crippled me to the point where I pretty much ended up having an existential crisis.

Being burnt out as well, isn’t a good feeling either. We’ve all been through that moment where we worked really hard, and we need that break but we keep pushing ourselves to do more. This eventually leads to growing tired of working and taking time off to recuperate after a long amount of time of working, or working intensely on a consistent basis. I’ve always been someone who loves to work even if it’s for free. It’s a character trait I developed from my dad who keeps on working no matter what because he loves to work. But unfortunately I developed the similar habit he has. When we get burnt out, it gets so bad, it leads to quitting. I luckily broke out of this habit after only one job back in January, granted it was a job I wasn’t fond of after only two weeks, and the burn out was a whole lot faster, and a lot more uglier. But having writer’s block and being burnt out while having the urge to write at the same time, is like downing a bottle of Adderall while drinking a bottle of Jack, it’s gonna get super ugly when you crash, and the hangover is going to be hospital inducing. 

I’m glad I stopped and took a break when I did, because I pretty much turned into a runaway freight train and nearly collided with a wall which probably had the word “SELF-DESTRUCT” written all over it. This whole thing reminded me of when Kat reacted to Don’t Hug Me, I’m Scared a few years ago and how she brought up how being too creative could make you go insane. Looking back at it, I pretty much did go insane given after Console Wars, I was about to drill myself head first into a brick wall with little time to figure things out, resulting in pressing my luck only to get a double whammy. That’s an old TV Game Show reference if no one gets it, 10 bucks to the first person who does get it.

I don’t really have any advice on how to prevent burn out and writer’s block, other than saying that it’s okay to take a break. And this isn’t just for the AAOG writers, this is for everyone who’s dealing with a gap with no bridge or an obstacle that’s hard to get over. That includes the guest writers, fan fiction writers, people writing books, comics, content creators, musicians, artists, even the people who are working on an essay project. It’s alright to take a break every once in a while when you feel that your brain can’t take it anymore and you feel the need to give up. We’re humans at the end of the day, not robots who can keep going without rest. But even robots need to rest before they start falling apart. You’d never want to overexert yourself to the point where you don’t love your passion anymore, because when it gets to that point, it’s gonna be a lot harder to recover from a burn out or even writer’s block.

Stay safe, and take care of yourselves.

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