Today’s blog post is somewhat metapoetic. I just graduated with a degree in Journalism and minored in English, so words are my business. However, I run out of words sometimes. Writer’s block is a real issue, people. However, there’s comfort in knowing that some of the best right-brainers have experienced writer’s block, including Peanuts creator Charles Schulz. I’ve thought long and hard about the causes of my writer’s block and I’ve evened it down to a few main causes:
1. Deadline stress. Nothing makes the right side of my brain clam up like the impending doom of a deadline. Deadlines combined with my incredible procrastination skills have led to some major freak-outs and some of the worst writers block ever experienced at the most inopportune times.
2. Sometimes I’m just in need of a muse. I took a poetry class my sophomore year of college and when I wasn’t writing about the total pain and agony of a three-month college relationship gone awry, I wasn’t writing much of anything.
3. The absolute biggest catalyst of my writer’s block is my own self-doubt. A majority of the time when I write I start with a brainstorming session. I just have to put my pen to paper and get the juices flowing, but if I put my pen to paper and second-guess everything I put down, I don’t get anywhere. When I brainstorm in the initial stages I need to think happy thoughts, not negative ones.
While I’ve found the cause of my writer’s block, I’m still working on a cure. The greatest cure I’ve found so far is to take a 30 minute mind-clearing break, walk around, experience life, and return with a fresh pair of eyeballs. This is why Mad Men’s Don Draper naps on the couch or goes out for cocktails when he’s up against a deadline. Here are some comic strip creators who remind us writer’s block-ridden that we do not stand alone: