Ep 42 – Writing Anxiety with Mike Harrington

Oliver discusses with Mike the ways anxiety has affected them when trying to write, and how Mike overcame a thirty year block to end up making his first ever short story submission!

Subjects they cover include playing Dungeons & Dragons leading to creative writing, the potential long-term impact of complimenting your child’s creativity, the validation brought by writing, a state of flow found when writing and the peace found within it, the merits of escapism, the editor in the back of your head, nurturing empathy through writing and reading, when writing anxiety first truly manifested for Mike, conflating an author’s writing in a character’s voice with the author’s own self, how writing anxiety can manifest and be triggered, the whole “always have a notebook handy” thing, outlining, the fallacy of seeking the One Right Method, “well, that isn’t realistic…”, feeling “behind” other writers or on your reading, comparing ourselves to what others show of themselves, the myth of the “self-made man”, the compulsion to tell stories, how Mike got over thirty years of writer’s block, the importance of finding a good writing community, learning to accept where you are, the advice Mike would give the Mike of a year ago (when he was still stuck), writing as a process of discovery and self-discovery, what kind of writing makes Oliver anxious, “REAL writers write every day…”, the story Mike wrote for his first ever submission, the importance of reading broadly, and more!

Several Short Sentences About Writing by Verlyn Klinkenborg
Vettius and His Friends by David Drake
Since recording, Mike has dared to make an author Twitter account for himself!
The Whetstone Tavern Discord
Black Gate
The Silver Key (Brian Murphy’s blog!)
Howard Andrew Jones’ author page
Imaginary Cities: A Tour of Dream Cities, Nightmare Cities, and Everywhere in Between by Darran Anderson

Please consider: Supporting us on Patreon and Buying Oliver’s Books!

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