From A Journalism Major With Writer's Block

From A Journalism Major With Writer's Block

There will always be something to talk about, but I won't always have something to say.


Writer's block - n. a psychological inhibition preventing a writer from proceeding with a piece.

When given the dictionary definition of the term writer's block, most of us would not tend to over-analyze its meaning. But from a writer's perspective? The idea is altogether cryptic. There is nothing a writer fears more than becoming "blocked," or utterly uninspired to the point that there is ultimately no content left to produce at the given time. Due to the fact that most writers must produce content by specific deadlines, coming face to face with writer's block is disruptive to a lifestyle on a multitude of levels. Overwhelming senses of fear and pressure often set in, and a writer tends to be left uncomfortable with the resulting work they are expected to publish... kind of like what I'm doing right now.

As a person who strives to write successfully for a living, I live by one standard - you write what you know. Yet, right now, this is all that I know. Regardless of where I travel or whom I encounter, I find myself lacking in the inspiration department. I see beautiful things and surround myself with wonderful people, though nothing quite seems to spark a muse. As a journalism major, I am continuously questioned about what it is that I want to spend my life writing about. I find myself deep in the experimental stages of the writing process, making it difficult for me to narrow in on writing about only one of the many things that I am passionate about. The only cure for this highly destructive diagnosis?

I, as well as every other writer who faces such a bump in the road, must remain pragmatic.

It is realistic to believe that, in the world that we live in, there will always be something to talk about. Yet, regardless of the topic of discussion, one may not always have something to say. You write what you know, and, if you think that you know nothing, you write about why.

Cover Image Credit:

Gina Brennan

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Why High School Musicals Should Be As Respected As Sports Programs Are

The arts are important, too.

When I was in middle school and high school, I felt like I lived for the musicals that my school orchestrated.

For those of you who don't know, a musical is an onstage performance wherein actors take on roles that involve singing, and often dancing, to progress the plot of the story. While it may sound a little bit nerdy to get up in front of an audience to perform in this manner, this is something you cannot knock until you try it.

For some reason, though, many public schools have de-funded arts programs that would allow these musicals to occur, while increasing the funding for sports teams. There are a few things that are being forgotten when sports are valued more than musical programs in high schools.

Much like athletic hobbies, an actor must try out or audition to participate in a musical. Those best suited for each role will be cast, and those who would not fit well are not given a part. While this may sound similar to trying out for say, basketball, it is an apples-to-oranges comparison.

At a basketball tryout, those who have the most experience doing a lay-up or shooting a foul shot will be more likely to succeed, no questions asked. However, for an audition, it is common to have to learn a piece of choreography upon walking in, and a potential castmember will be required to sing a selected piece with only a few days of preparation.

There are many more variables involved with an audition that makes it that much more nerve-racking.

The cast of a school musical will often rehearse for several months to perfect their roles, with only several nights of performance at the end. Many sports practice for three or four days between each of their respective competitions. While this may seem to make sports more grueling, this is not always the case.

Musicals have very little payoff for a large amount of effort, while athletic activities have more frequent displays of their efforts.

Athletes are not encouraged to but are allowed to make mistakes. This is simply not allowed for someone in a musical, because certain lines or entrances may be integral to the plot.

Sometimes, because of all the quick changes and the sweat from big dance numbers, the stage makeup just starts to smear. Despite this, an actor must smile through it all. This is the part of musicals that no sport has: introspection.

An actor must think about how he or she would respond in a given situation, be it saddening, maddening, frightening, or delightful. There is no sport that requires the knowledge of human emotion, and there is especially no sport that requires an athlete to mimic such emotion. This type of emotional exercise helps with communications and relationships.

Sports are great, don't get me wrong. I loved playing volleyball, basketball, track, and swimming, but there were no experiences quite like those from a musical. Sports challenge the body with slight amounts of tactic, while musicals require much physical and mental endurance.

The next time you hear someone say that it's “just a musical," just remember that musicals deserve as much respect as sports, since they are just as, if not more demanding.

Cover Image Credit: Cincinnati Arts

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15 Things You Can Do If You're Having A Rough Semester

Because we all need a little breather.


With the end of the semester drawing to an end, some students are finding themselves extremely stressed out. It doesn't help too if you've been having a pretty rough semester. With all the homework and studying, we seem to never find time for ourselves. That can make it even harder. To help relieve some stress, there are some ways that could help.

1. Read a book

2. Take a weekend getaway

3. Exercise

4. Find a hobby

5. Find a good show on Netflix

6. Have a day where you pamper yourself

7. Pick a day and stay in bed

8. Visit friends and family

9. Paint or draw

10. Take a walk at the park

11. Go shopping

12. Go to a theme park

13. Play video games

14. Volunteer somewhere

15. Color

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