Lesson from Bon Jovi: “Do What You Can”

By Kathryn Lane

When I give presentations on
writing, I’m often asked if I’ve experienced writer’s block – a slowdown of
creativity or the inability to create a new work.

When my creativity slows, I
turn to researching topics I’m writing about and that attracts my creative angels
again. But I’ve heard stories of how dreadful writer’s block can be. Truman
Capote spent the last ten years of his life speaking about the masterpiece he
was writing, a work that never materialized and possibly caused the stress that
triggered his nervous breakdown. How sad is that? 

On the other hand, Gabriel Garcia
Marquez, often spoke of his inability to progress on “One Hundred Years of
Solitude.” He gave up and drove his family from Mexico City, where they were
living, to the seaside resort of Acapulco for vacation. They were just arriving
at the bay of Acapulco when he stopped the car and turned around, explaining to
his wife that he now clearly saw the premise for “One Hundred Years of
Solitude.” Skipping vacation, he drove back to Mexico City, sat at his
typewriter, and banged out his masterpiece, the novel which undoubtedly won the
Nobel Prize in literature for him.

what happens when a writer hits a wall?


news about a song in the upcoming album 

When Bon Jovi’s tour was
cancelled due to COVID-19, he didn’t just stay home and fret. No, he stepped in
as dishwasher at his JBJ Soul Kitchen in Red Bank, New Jersey – a restaurant he
established years ago which often provides food to those in need.


An Instagram posting showing
him washing dishes, stated “When you can’t do what you do, then do what you
can.” That inspired him to create the song “Do What You Can.”


lesson in Bon Jovi’s action is to turn disappointment around when facing
adversity. If it’s writer’s block or any type of setback, flip it over by doing
what you can, rather than forcing yourself to do what you normally do. Until
inspiration hits again!


I experience writer’s block and turn to dish washing, I think my creativity
would return very quickly!


had writer’s block? How did you overcome it?

Kathryn’s books –
The Nikki Garcia Thriller series and her short story collection – Backyard
All available on Amazon.

Kathryn Lane started out as a starving artist. To earn a living, she became
a certified public accountant and embarked on a career in international finance
with a major multinational corporation. After two decades, she left the
corporate world to plunge into writing mystery and suspense thrillers. In her
stories, Kathryn draws deeply from



“If I Had Something to Say” by re_birf is
licensed under 
CC BY 2.0

Other photos from public domain.

2 replies
  1. Gay Yellen
    Gay Yellen says:

    I never gave writer's block a second thought until a well-meaning fan presented me with the worst possible thank-you gift for speaking to her book club: a lovely lucite paperweight cube with WRITER'S BLOCK engraved on it. If I truly believed in curses, that one would would've freaked me out, and it kinda did. It's hidden away until I can think of an appropriate exorcism rite for it.

  2. Kathryn Lane
    Kathryn Lane says:

    It would have freaked me out for sure! No matter how good the intentions! An exorcism rite is in order!!!

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