​10 Ways To Beat Writer’s Block

​10 Ways To Beat Writer’s Block

a.k.a Devil’s spawn for writers everywhere
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I've been an avid writer for years now.

Well, obviously, why would I have this job if I wasn’t?

Writing is my way of releasing anxiety, focusing on my work, and how I translate my creativity into the real world.

With loving to write comes the terrible plague that we all despise: Writers. Block.

It's also the reason it is my topic for this article *nervous laughter*.

So with that in mind, here are ten ways to beat Writer’s Block.

1) Just walk away. Sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself is to just get up and take a breather. A small mental break can help your mind see where you were coming from and how you're going to move forward from there.

2) Find a Playlist. Listening to music is the best way to get the creative juices flowing. If you’re into classical music, turn it on low while doing something else and it should prevent blocks from happening later (from my experience at least). If not, find an awesome Alt-playlist on Spotify like Chill Vibes or Alternative Beats. The lyricism that goes into Alt tracks can inspire a theme for your writing without you even noticing.

3) Color. I highly suggest you invest in the coloring book phenomena. It really does work. Mandala patters or books with heavy detailing can focus your mind, and when you’re done with your masterpiece, you’ll have the clarity to continue writing.

4) Do some Hatha yoga. I recommend Hatha styles because they usually have a heavy reliance on breathing and meditation infused with the focus needed to complete the poses. Blocking out what you're so desperately trying to complete should eventually cancel out your current block and help you write with more mental clarity that before (plus it healthy for your body).

5) Try a writing game. Games like wreck this journal or black out poetry can help get your mind to continue to think creatively while also making you see things in a different perspective. Exercising different areas of your creative mind can help you relax, and a new perspective can help you think of that unexpected turning point you so desperately need.

6) Go for a walk. Yes, go for a walk. And leave your tablet/notebook at home. Take the time to really disconnect from your project and let your mind wander. Sometimes you can find exactly what you need when you give your mind the time to explore ideas you would usually push away.

7) Hang out with writer friends. Voicing your block to your fellow peers can help you push past the obsession and look for a solution. Talking over your idea can also help you see if the block is coming from a lack of structure or explanation further back in your story.

8) Read. Pick up a new book, or reread your favorite. Seeing how someone who does this for a living is able to flow from one idea to another can help you realize how to do the same. Plus, reading is great, and you should be doing it anyways.

9) Practice word vomit. Seriously, this works. Open a separate document or turn to a new page, and just write for 10 minutes. Don’t think about if it makes sense with the timeline you have or if it is even about your piece. Just don’t stop writing! When you’re done, read it over. You’d be surprised how many great ideas you can use!

10) Don’t quit. Even if it’s taking you a while to get over your block, don’t give up! Keep working at it and eventually you’ll get past it. Don’t let it take your creativity away.

Cover Image Credit: Kayla Baptista

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.
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Hey,

So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?

Sincerely,

Me

Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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Writing Saved My Sanity

Write it all down when you can't talk to anyone.

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I love writing.

I have since elementary school, and I've dreamed of becoming a published author. I started off writing stupid plays in elementary school, then it grew it almost writing a full-blown novel in middle school. I have no idea where that thing went to. It was all notebook paper and bad writing. In high school, my writing was kinda pushed to the side so I could focus on school. When I entered college, I started writing small poems about my now ex-boyfriend.

I was scared to express myself to him sometimes, the intensity of my feelings for him scared me. So instead of telling him, I wrote them down. When I tried to share them with him, he hated it. He thought writing down feelings was weird and creepy. So I didn't share anything else with him. When we finally broke up for good, everything just poured out of me. What I couldn't express verbally, I wrote or typed out.

I always have ideas flowing through my head. They never cease and I wouldn't want them to. Writing gives me an escape, from stress, work, school, or fights. It gives me a place to vent and to be open with everything. This is a reason I love writing for Odyssey, not only has this place brought me amazing friends but revived my love for writing. I'm never without my notebook anymore, I'd get distracted in class by an idea and have to write I think then and there.

I love sharing my more personal writing with close friends, especially my poems as of late. I found that I have a voice for young women who find themselves in a toxic relationship much like mine was. I want to speak out and show them that you can grow from the bullshit. It may take some time, but you will be better.

Writing saved my sanity. It allows me to express myself without having to use my actual voice. Anyone who knows me, knows I hate public speaking. I tend to psych myself out leading up to it. My current projects include writing for Odyssey every week, I'm in the process of trying to continue my short stories, and I'm excited to announce that I'm currently working on my very first poetry book!

Writing has given me so much, and I'm so looking forward to making a career out of something I love so much.

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