Writer’s Block For Cthulhu Cultists

Dear Initiate,

Congratulations upon making it to, and surviving, the Third Level Initiation!

We realize that after the many dreadful oaths; the threats of fates so far worse than death that human language, in self-defense, have never found words to describe; the utter secrecy; the repeated understanding that letting a single ignorant Mere Human know our actions would result in punishments which would make the average Borgia say, “Hey, now, that’s a bit much, don’t you think?”—that in light of all that stuff, it’s odd that you’re now getting your instructions from public posts on the Internet.

The fact is, the early stages of your Cthulhu Culthood are tests of sincerity, of ability to keep a secret, of not being some sort of meddling do-gooder, and also, of whether or not, if we really need someone to jump on the sacrificial altar, you’ll do your part and push someone else onto the damn thing.

But the truth is, all of the Order’s more important secrets are freely available on the Internet. We simply call them ‘fiction’. You’ve seen this before; people think that the writer is simply playing out the tired trope of pretending that their fiction is reality pretending to be fiction, but in fact, it is the lively and dynamic trope of pretending that one’s reality is fiction pretending to be reality pretending to be fiction pretending to be reality.

Got it? Great.

Now, as usual, we’ll explain the esoteric meaning of yet another seemingly-harmless action which has penetrated into mainstream culture. As usual, they believe there are Secret Monsters everywhere; as usual, they are right; and as usual, they are terrible at detecting the actual monsters. But it keeps them too busy to find us, and they seem to enjoy it, so, hey, more power to them, eh?

While this one goes out to the writers, it’s become so prevalent (good on us!) that even most readers are aware of it: “If you’ve got writer’s block, then one cure is to sit down for 15 minutes a day, every day, and write down 15 minutes of whatever comes into your head. Even if it’s silly, even if it’s nonsense. You’ll break through the writer’s block, and start writing freely again!”

Now, those of you of the Fifth Level or higher are already chuckling, of course. Like every joke, it’s not as funny if you explain it, but we feel like you deserve to know:

All humans, as you’re aware, are capable of performing magic. It is the Psychic Censor, the part of our consciousness which isn’t mapped in our brains, but hangs out near our astral centers of projection, which saves us from ourselves. It’s why you can say “DAMN YOU!” without immediately opening up a rift between here and Hell and sucking your enemy straight down to the 9th Level. It’s why we don’t all win the lottery, thus bankrupting whatever state might have provided the lottery ticket. It’s why most attempts to wield The Force end up as nothing more than foolish wand-waving.

Now we, ourselves, aren’t exactly interested in Magic in general, except (as with everything else in this world) as a means to an end. Obviously, we want to use sorcery to bring about the thing we’ve wanted for millennia: an opening of the gates between Here and There, which will bring our Eldritch Masters through and into this world.

But we just can’t find the right combination of words to do it.

Every time we try, we go mad.

People keep talking about the brilliant Abdul Alhazred, and, of course, we all revere him, so much as we revere any members of the puny race whose only purpose is to be extinguished to feed the hunger of the Great Old Ones. But, like most people who managed to disable his Psychic Censor sufficient to intentionally write something monstrous, he went mad and was, as we all know, shredded by invisible demons in broad daylight.

Don’t worry. It won’t happen to you. You’ll be different.

But in the meantime, the best thing for us would be for some human who is ignorant of That Which Lurks Beyond to do the summoning for us.

And many have come close. Many writers, doing this exercise day after day for a few weeks, begin feeling peculiar emotions and hearing strange sounds; most of all, cats and dogs and other household pets (unless they’re snakes, obviously) begin to act very alarmed during the writing process.

So far, none have quite succeeded. Either they’ve broken the writer’s block just before opening the gate, or they’ve opened it only long enough for the writers, themselves, to be sucked through—and then it shuts again. This scarcely ever happens, and when it does, we try to provide homunculi as substitutes. (Sorry about Mr. Martin; we were looking forward to reading the end of that series as much as you were.)

But if you keep encouraging people to just relax, sit down, and write or type, and let whatever’s within come out…

…as you know, that’s one invitation magic can never resist. So far, it’s mostly just made the world a lot more surreal, but that’s okay. We’ve waited for millennia. We can wait a little longer.

In conclusion, if you ever have writer’s block, it’s definitely your mind torturing you with a lack of words because it’s mean, and certainly not your mind trying to save you from yourself. So break through the…barrier. That way you can do lots and lots of writing. You can write ’til the end of the world, if you want.

That’s just an expression, of course.

~Jeff Mach


My name is Jeff Mach (“Dark Lord” is optional) and I build communities, put on events, and make stories come into being. You can get most of my books right here. Go ahead, pre-order I HATE Your Prophecy“. It may make you into a bad person, but I can live with that.





Jeff Mach Written by:

Jeff Mach is an author, playwright, event creator, and certified Villain. You can always pick up his bestselling first novel, "There and NEVER, EVER BACK AGAIN"—or, indeed, his increasingly large selection of other peculiar books. If you'd like to talk more to Jeff, or if you're simply a Monstrous Creature yourself, stop by @darklordjournal on Twitter, or The Dark Lord Journal on Facebook.