Writers Block? Try Frasier’s Dirty Little Secret
Mindset is everything.
This is true whether you are cooking, or acting, or “performing” in any sense.
Here is a mindset trick from one of the best.
Kelsey Grammer (Frasier) said:
I require what I call “requisite disrespect” for the craft. You have to care about it so much that you finally get to a place where you don’t care at all.
Often Kelsey Grammer would not fully memorize his lines. This gave his delivery a spontaneous and energized quality.
Apply the concept of “requisite disrespect” to your own writing.
Think about writing as a “performance.” A good way to improve is to write (and to publish) frequent, short pieces.
After you do this for awhile, you begin to gain perspective on the relative importance/unimportance of each given piece you publish. This will spare you from the writer’s curse of morbid introspection.
You will begin to care a little less about whether a given piece was a B vs. an A — or whether it was an A- vs. an A+.
After all, it’s only one piece among many. And you will soon have more chances to say it better.
Grammer’s mindset of “requisite disrespect” helps us overcome the artificial quality that can come into a performance.
Instead of expecting each individual piece to obtain top quality, you allow each piece to be what it is. You thus put your own mind on notice:
- It’s going to be adequate.
- It’s going to be fast.
- We are not taking a mulligan.
- Whatever we perform today is what the world is going to see.
In the short range, this will perhaps let some B-level (C-level?) writing escape your pen.
In the long range, it will lead to greater values:
- More publishing experience
- A better learning experience
- Faster growth in the skills you seek