My six-year-old does not get creatively blocked

Sitting at the counter, she draws the moon eating ice cream, a smiling cactus, a howling wolf with a camera around its neck. She does not bemoan blank pages. She finishes one drawing, grabs another sheet, and makes a sharp, new line.

What changes from that age to this?

After completing the draft of a book a while back, I’ve roamed around on semi-empty pages, writing lines I then erase, telling myself I’m gathering details, exploring ideas.

But part of the time, I’m just blocked. And the block is fear.

Fear that revisiting the book draft will reveal how bad it really is.
Fear that the stories I write won’t reach the standard I set for myself.
Fear that the new ideas coming to me aren’t flashy or big enough.

I wonder if the only creative block is fear—fear of a future misstep that hasn’t happened yet (and never can if you just keep the page empty). The block is your brain’s way of keeping you safe.

My daughter is not yet afraid. She shows me that the actual process of making something may involve missteps and retries, sure, but never a dead stall—not if you’re here now, focused only on making the art in front of you.


PS. I’ve been inconsistent here—blocked. I lost sight of what I’m using this space for: grabbing another sheet, writing low-stakes lines to share among friends. My life right now doesn’t support a post every day, but I commit to posting every Sunday night at least. See you then. I appreciate that you read the little things I share.