Writing Anxiety Readings This is a short list of readings, some scholarly, some light, that offer insight into writing anxiety.
Writing Apprehension Instrument - This is the first piece ever written on writing anxiety, which paved the way for much scholarship in this area. In 1975, John Daly and Michael Miller designed a 26-item instrument designed to measure writing apprehension.
Situational Anxiety Measures - While the piece above has been an icon of scholarship on writing anxiety, one of the critiques of the original instrument is that did not take into account that specific writing scenarios could ignite different degrees of writing anxiety. In 1980, they designed an instrument that would measure writing anxiety with respect to genre.
"Shitty First Drafts" - Excerpted from Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott's insightful, humorous writing guide, this chapter discusses Lamott's philosophy to just getting words down on paper.
"Treatment of Writing Apprehension" - This seminal article by Roy Fox discusses an empirical study that measured different types of assignments that either aggravated or alleviated writing anxiety.
"Rigid Rules" - In 1980, Mike Rose conducted a study involving a group of students who were suffering from writer's block; he found that some were inhibited by writing anxiety, while others followed rules and limiting processes that constrained their processes.
"Writing Rituals" - Part of the problem for some people is that they don't have the ideal physical environment for which to get started writing. The authors examined over 100 different writers to get a sense of the rituals they undergo that best enable their writing.
"Self-Talk" - This reading has to do with ways of developing more positive inner dialogue.
Self-Talk Handout - Complete this handout as you attempt to write. Record all the negative inner dialogue that occurs as you write, and try to replace it with more positive affirmations that can help you make progress.