5 Struggles You Know If You're A Writer

5 Struggles You Know If You're A Writer

Writing is hard.

As a creative writing major, I find myself spending a large chunk of my free time writing for one reason or another. This probably doesn't come out as a surprise. That being said, there are lots of things that get in the way of a lot of my writing (outside of required assignments) from being completed. I feel like lots of these distractions are universal enough to make a relatable list.

1. Writer's Block

First, I'll start with the obvious one. No matter how much you want to write, or how much you try to write, you can't seem to get anything with substance on the page. Any ideas you have, if you're able to create one, falls flat. Writer's Block is a vicious cycle that can be never ending.

2. Procrastination

Yeah, this one is a very real writer struggle. There are times I have a great idea for writing, but then I put it off. Whether it's for my own personal work, or for a class, I usually find myself cramming large projects into smaller time spans than I should. It's possible this tendency stems from not wanting to write something until the time feels right, but it's still procrastination.

3. A Busy Schedule

Often times I find myself putting off personal projects due to work and school. A lot of this involves me writing papers and stories for school instead. There's also the time I spend doing other things that don't involve writing, such as going to work or spending time with friends and family. I know, excuses, excuses.

4. The Internet

This distraction is one of the key distractions in my life. I use my laptop for most of my writing, but with that comes the responsibility of focusing. It's way too easy to open up the internet and watch videos on YouTube or goof around on Twitter/Facebook. It's hard to push time-wasters such as these aside.

5. Editing

When it comes to my personal writing, one of the things that keep me from doing more writing is editing. It can be hard to revisit something after it's already down on the page, especially if you're already experiencing the other writing struggles listed above. Then due to this, there's only so much you can do to continue working on a bigger project without editing the parts you've already written. I find that once I finally sit down and force myself to do some work it's a lot easier to keep going.

Cover Image Credit: Tookapic / Pexels

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Things I'd Rather Do Than Write My Thesis

Can I just go back to school?

Depending on the type of major a student has in college or university, he or she has to write a thesis in their senior and/or graduate year. It is the most annoying and horrific thing to write. It’s dreadful and not fun. You know that moment where you stare at your blank screen with a slack-jawed expression? Yeah, multiply that by tenfold. Here is a list of things I’d rather do than write my thesis:

Clean my room.

Go out with friends.

Hang out with my little brother.

Drink.

Perform a Lobotomy.

Listen to the soundtrack of Hamilton, Moana, Wicked and Wicked- Hamilton is at least two and a half hours long.

Binge watch new Netflix shows.

Binge watch old Netflix shows-- I've watched The West Wing many, many times!

Schedule trips in advance.

Eat food.

Drink coffee.

Make a schedule of all the things I need to do in order to write my thesis.

Create a bullet journal.

Reorganize my closet.

Check out filters on Snapchat.

Check out Instagram and Facebook.

Read the news-- Can I just say "oy, vey?"

Text my friends-- Their lives are much better than writing a thesis any day!

Read a book.

Consider going back to school in order to defer my thesis.

Write an article for The Odyssey!

There ya have it, folks. Thesis writing will be the most awful thing you have to do. No thesis, no degree. No degree, no teaching. It’s a necessary evil but if you’re able to choose your topic, it is easier. Don’t get me wrong, my thesis is not a hard topic… it’s just the act of writing it, turning it in, and then being DONE with school that bothers me.

Cover Image Credit: Lidyanne Aquino

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How To Pay For College

Dream about being able to just go back to the dorm and sleep. Instead go to work and clock some more hours.

Save every penny you earn from babysitting those kids down the street. Put it in a jar labeled "College Fund." Daydream about all the Ivy league schools you're going to apply to someday. Snap out of it and finish up your homework for the night. Go to bed and dream of Princeton, Harvard, and Yale.

Start your junior year of high school. Give up on those dreams of the Ivy leagues and set your heart on a school in the city. Work harder than ever. Take your SATs. Do okay on them. Retake them. Do a little better.

Star your applications for college. Apply to six schools. Let that doubt creep in that you aren't talented enough to get into that school in the city. Don't even bother with the one in the city. Still dream about going there one day, maybe for grad school?

Wait to hear back from your top choice. Read the words "denied acceptance" on a letter from the school. Wait some more. Get into a school you've never heard of. Accept. Apply for loans. Pick up extra shifts at work. Apply for more loans. Apply for scholarships. Lay awake at night wondering how you are ever going to pay for all of these bills. Forget that you're walking across the stage in just a day and leaving high school behind for good.

Graduate high school. Celebrate. Refocus on the task at hand: paying for school. Work 40+ hours a week in the summer. See your co-workers more than your family. Pack everything up in your car just three months later and move 10 hours away.

Move into your dorm. Realize that that was the wrong room and move to your room down the hall. Start a new chapter of your life. Spend a month getting used to life on campus. Love all of your classes. Start applying for jobs. Get a response back right away from one. Go in for an interview. Accept when they offer it to you. Work there the rest of your college career.

Finish the semester strong. Go home and work extra shifts in between family dinners. Fill out your FASFA. Don't get enough aid. Apply for another loan. Go back to school and discover your dream job.

Tailor your schedules around becoming a journalist. Go above and beyond the requirements for your courses. Find a way to squeeze in more time to work.

Become a tutor. Work as many hours as you can. Find a love for helping your peers understand the things that come naturally to you. Apply for more scholarships. Hope you get some.

Keep your goal in sight. Keep your grades up and your mind sharp. Work hard not just to make money, but so you can keep doing what you love.

Cover Image Credit: Andrew Neel

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