It's Okay To Have Writer's Block, Just Get Back Into It

A Return to Creative Writing After a Hiatus

When the brick wall of writer's block comes crashing onto you.

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One of my favorite leisure activities as a child was writing my own stories. I loved to make up my own world out of a figment of my imagination, craft a piece about some alternate universe that I wished I could be a part of. When I was younger, this was just a simple pastime, rewriting the classic tales about dragons and princesses or just describing the scenery around me.

As I grew older, fiction writing became less of a casual activity and more of an escape. When I began to drown in the stress from an upcoming assignment, my journal would be my life vest. It was not just a release from the daily pressures of teenage years, but a method of survival. I needed to write in order to keep myself sane. I wanted to release all of my emotions on the page, close up the notebook and hide the angst away within the smudged ink.

By the time I entered my closing years of high school, I no longer had enough free time to write purely for pleasure. All of my pieces became analyses of novels and essays regarding the crises in third-world countries. Even if I had a moment to breathe during the day, I did not have the mental capacity to search for my journal and jot down my thoughts. For about two years, I did not write a polished creative piece.

When I finally entered college, I was interested in rediscovering my passion. I was not planning on becoming an author (although this was indeed my childhood fantasy), but I knew I had to take writing courses as a general education requirement. I enrolled in a fiction writing course, thinking the classroom environment could encourage me to find my voice.

After the first class, we were assigned to write a creative piece about anything we desired. Of course, I originally wished for some kind of prompt or guidance. However, with some time to reflect, I came to the conclusion that the freedom could actually be beneficial for me. I could look through my old notebook and find a past piece for inspiration, or just brainstorm something completely out of my comfort zone to experiment with.

I opened a blank document on my computer screen, excited for this journey to begin. I was going to write again. I could improve both academically and personally through revisiting the activity that once consumed me.

One hour went by staring at an empty white abyss.

"Just write the first thing that pops into your mind," I thought to myself.

Oranges? No, I can't do anything with oranges.

Cherries? No, that might get too sensual too quickly.

Why could I only think of fruit?

I wanted to prove to myself that I could do this, that I could write again creatively. I tried to brainstorm, but none of my ideas seemed worthy enough.

That was the problem: I wanted an idea that was complete, well thought-out, virtually flawless. I expected myself to be able to dive right in like I once could, but I was out of practice. This piece wasn't meant to be some impeccable masterpiece, it was meant to be coherent enough to workshop with fellow students.

Eventually, I was able to bang out a few sentences one day and continue with the idea the next until I arrived at something that almost resembled a story. It was by no means sophisticated, and it was not necessarily something I was proud of. But it was something I could bring to class, something I could potentially improve.

After taking a break from creative writing, it's difficult to get back into it without a few slip-ups. Not everything you make has to be up to the standards of your old pieces. I have to learn to be gentle with myself as I rebuild my skills. I have to find a source of inspiration, and I still need to obtain my personal voice.

I always hesitated to call myself a "writer." I thought the title was too bold for someone who just enjoyed sketching out storylines. Perhaps being a writer isn't about creating magic, it's just about making something that is authentic and satisfactory. Maybe I'm not a writer yet then, but I may be making my way there.

Hopefully, my fellow classmates and professor will recognize this and accept my story for what it is: a work in progress. I just hope none of them are allergic to citrus.

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A list Of 15 Inspiring Words That Mean So Much

A single word can mean a lot.
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Positivity is so important in life. A lot of times we always go to quotes for empowerment but I have realized that just one word can be just as powerful. Here is a list of inspiring words.

1. Worthy

Realizing your self-worth is important. Self-worth can really make or break a persons personality. Always know that you are worthy of respect. And also, never compare yourself to others.

2. Courage

Be courageous in life. Life has so many opportunities so do not be scared to grasp any opportunity that comes your way. You have the ability to do anything you have your heart and mind set to do, even the things that frighten you.

3. Enough

When you are feeling down and feeling that nothing you do is ever good enough, know that you are more than enough. And yes there is always room for improvement but when it comes to my self-worth I always have to remind myself that I am enough.

4. Blessed

Be thankful. A lot of times we forget how blessed we are. We focus so much on stress and the bad things that are going on in our lives that we tend to forget all of the beautiful things we have in life.

5. Focus

Focus on your goals, focus on positive things, and focus on the ones you love. Do not focus on things that will keep you from not reaching your goals and people that do not have good intentions for your life.

6. Laugh

Laughing is one of the best forms of medicine. Life is truly better with laughter.

7. Warrior

Through the good and the bad you are a warrior. Be strong, soldier.

8. Seek

Seek new things. Allow yourself to grow in life. Do not just be stuck.

9. Faith

During the bad times, no matter the circumstances, have faith that everything will be all right.

10. Live

Start living because life is honestly way too short. Live life the way you want to live. Do not let anyone try to control you.

11. Enjoy

Enjoy everything that life has to offer. Enjoy even the littlest of things because, as I said before, life is short. And plus, there is no time to live life with regrets.

12. Believe

Believe in yourself and never stop. Believing in yourself brings so many blessings and opportunities in your life.

13. Serendipity

A lot of times we look for things to fill an empty void that we have. Usually what we are looking for comes when we are not looking at all. Your serendipity will come.

14. Create

Share your ideas with the world. Creativity brings change to your life. However you chose to use your creativity do not be scared to show your intelligence, talent, and passion.

15. Love

The world is already full of so much hate, so love unconditionally with all your heart.

Cover Image Credit: Tanveer Naseer

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Part 1: Necessary Changes

One of my favorite movies is "Fried Green Tomatoes" with Kathy Bates. In the movie Bates' character Evelyn Couch says, "Someone helped put a mirror up in front of my face, and I didn't like what I saw one bit. And you know what I did? I changed." I know the feeling.

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I looked in the mirror over the weekend and didn't like what I saw.

The person I saw looking back at me is petty, selfish, manipulative, and unattractive. It wasn't that I hated what I saw, but I definitely didn't like what I saw either. It's a surreal feeling, looking at yourself through a critical lens, and it doesn't make you feel good in any way shape or form.

The image that I see of myself is not how I want others to perceive me. I want to be someone that people look at and see kindness, compassion, strength, and confidence.

I have enough general life experience to know that these types of changes aren't going to happen overnight, and not all of them will be physical; most of these will have to happen from the inside, from within myself.

When you find out you are all broken and damaged, it's hard to know where to start putting the pieces back together. I figured the best place to start would be the most literal: my actual insides; so, I decided to embark on a deep-cleansing journey to get all of the toxins out of my body, from the inside out.

I found this book on 10-day green smoothie detox stashed away in the dark corner of my bookshelf. The science behind it seems accurate and legitimate. By eliminating certain foods, your body is able to detox itself off of chemicals and foods that are slowing down your metabolism; the smoothies are specifically designed with combinations of foods that help restart your metabolism. Part of the detox process is getting rid of all dependencies on caffeine, alcohol, and sugar.

Every day you are given the recipe for a specific smoothie; you make the smoothie (about 40 ounces) and sip on it throughout the day whenever you get hungry. Every smoothie is a combination of leafy greens, water, fruit, and flax seeds. If you do happen to get hungry throughout the day, you are encouraged to eat raw nuts, hard boiled eggs, and a wide variety of crunchy green vegetables. There is also a detox tea that you have first thing in the morning, but other than that no other beverages are allowed except water.

I know that this is only the beginning of a very long, emotional, and draining journey. But I think I'm at the point in my life where I have to make these changes. I have to put my pieces together, I have to become a normal functioning adult, I have to find out who I am. I think that this is the perfect way to start.

For the next 10 days I am going to be documenting my experiences, how I'm feeling, what my emotions are doing, and any results that I see.

Stay tuned!

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