On Writer's Block
Start writing a post
Student Life

On Writer's Block

The bane of my existence

On Writer's Block
Bookworm's Diary

We've all experienced it. Staring at a blank notebook page or word document, we have all felt it. Words are simultaneously jumbled in your brain and your brain is also totally empty. It's the feeling I get when there's a pop quiz or I get called on in class. If I was asked the question in casual setting I'd probably whip out the answer, but the minute there are all eyes on me or any form of pressure a loud "ummmmm" gets drawn out of my mouth. I once panicked on a pop quiz and wrote down the death date of a person because I couldn't remember anything else once pressure was applied. Needless to say words fly out of my brain at high speed. Writer's block is when I get that pop-quiz feeling and all I can do is stare at the blank page and say "ummmm."

Sometimes I get writer's block when I have to write an assignment. It is guaranteed to happen if I try and start by writing the title. I cannot title an academic paper to save my own butt. This could be because I have a nasty habit of labeling things "assignment for [insert name of class] 1" or "paper for [insert name of professor]". This habit makes tracking my documents relatively simple but I never get points for creativity.

Writer's block often happens when I have the most thoughts going on in my head. It's like the jumble of thoughts and words and fragments is a pricker bush and inside that bush there is a flower. That flower is the kernel I need to start writing. But I can't get it. I can't quite reach it so I sit there and chase my thoughts around without my fingers ever touching the keyboard.

So how do I overcome the writer's block? I don't. I let it take its hold on me for as long as it needs. There are little things I do to try and get my writing flow back. I can't say if they work or not. But here's the list.

1. Put on a movie

This is rather simple. We all have that one movie that we've seen countless times that gets our thoughts going. Sometimes I need a movie to trigger a certain emotion that I feel stuck on. Sometimes I just need to feel inspired by something outside of the realm of my everyday life. Sometimes I just need a distraction. For any of these reasons I often find myself watching a movie to get unstuck.

2. Stream of consciousness

Something that is tried and true to help get the writing flow going is setting a timer and just writing every thought. This thought could be writing "I have nothing to say" over and over again if need be. Stream of conscious writing can help the process of writing get started. There's also a chance that maybe there's an idea that pops out of stream of conscious writing that is the exact starting point you needed.

3. Go for a walk

I love walking. While writing is one of my favorite activities my favorite thing to do that far eclipses writing is walking. I love to put headphones in, sneakers on, and just go. My mind goes faster than my feet and nothing matters but just existing. I often find when I come home from a long walk I can focus the best. I also find that after a walk grabbing an idea and sticking with it is much more like grabbing a flower that's just popped up in the sidewalk-far easier than delving through a pricker bush. This might not work for everyone and sometimes a walk isn't always feasible, but this is the best way to get rid of writer's block in my opinion.

4. Organize your thoughts

Sometimes when writer's block occurs it can be helpful to make a list or mind map. Not being able to get organized or being overwhelmed by a paper in its totality can be at the heart of writer's block. Getting a list of points to hit in the piece of writing or even just making a flowchart of ideas can make a world of difference.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
the beatles
Wikipedia Commons

For as long as I can remember, I have been listening to The Beatles. Every year, my mom would appropriately blast “Birthday” on anyone’s birthday. I knew all of the words to “Back In The U.S.S.R” by the time I was 5 (Even though I had no idea what or where the U.S.S.R was). I grew up with John, Paul, George, and Ringo instead Justin, JC, Joey, Chris and Lance (I had to google N*SYNC to remember their names). The highlight of my short life was Paul McCartney in concert twice. I’m not someone to “fangirl” but those days I fangirled hard. The music of The Beatles has gotten me through everything. Their songs have brought me more joy, peace, and comfort. I can listen to them in any situation and find what I need. Here are the best lyrics from The Beatles for every and any occasion.

Keep Reading...Show less
Being Invisible The Best Super Power

The best superpower ever? Being invisible of course. Imagine just being able to go from seen to unseen on a dime. Who wouldn't want to have the opportunity to be invisible? Superman and Batman have nothing on being invisible with their superhero abilities. Here are some things that you could do while being invisible, because being invisible can benefit your social life too.

Keep Reading...Show less

19 Lessons I'll Never Forget from Growing Up In a Small Town

There have been many lessons learned.

houses under green sky
Photo by Alev Takil on Unsplash

Small towns certainly have their pros and cons. Many people who grow up in small towns find themselves counting the days until they get to escape their roots and plant new ones in bigger, "better" places. And that's fine. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought those same thoughts before too. We all have, but they say it's important to remember where you came from. When I think about where I come from, I can't help having an overwhelming feeling of gratitude for my roots. Being from a small town has taught me so many important lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

Keep Reading...Show less
​a woman sitting at a table having a coffee

I can't say "thank you" enough to express how grateful I am for you coming into my life. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I would not be the person I am today without you and I know that you will keep inspiring me to become an even better version of myself.

Keep Reading...Show less
Student Life

Waitlisted for a College Class? Here's What to Do!

Dealing with the inevitable realities of college life.

college students waiting in a long line in the hallway

Course registration at college can be a big hassle and is almost never talked about. Classes you want to take fill up before you get a chance to register. You might change your mind about a class you want to take and must struggle to find another class to fit in the same time period. You also have to make sure no classes clash by time. Like I said, it's a big hassle.

This semester, I was waitlisted for two classes. Most people in this situation, especially first years, freak out because they don't know what to do. Here is what you should do when this happens.

Keep Reading...Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments