How to survive writer's block

Writer's Block photo

By Anna Gál

Uninspired, bored, cannot find anything exciting or interesting for weeks that would be worth writing about? You feel like you are stuck with your story or that there is too much information in your mind that you don’t know what to write down?

Writer’s block can be a real demon for everyone, but for those who are not prepared for it and don’t know how to handle these periods, it can be even darker.

There is so much new information from day to day. You see videos of Trump’s unique handshakes, appearance and comments that sound like he received the main role in some tragicomedy film. You see news from migration crisis on an everyday basis with the exact same news but with different numbers, you see everything that others see, but besides making small comments on them, you just don’t really feel passionate enough about this stuff to write a whole article about it.

You think perhaps it is time for a break… or maybe it is time for you to discover the world outside your comfort zone and do things that you didn’t do before. And now I don’t mean to go jump off the highest cliff ever, or discover if you are able to swim through the widest lake in Hungary (although, if you intend to then go ahead).

I asked two experts, active writer Robert Smyth and student Camden Ostrander about how they deal with such a headache, and what advice they can give me, to get through this period. It turned out I am not the only one this spring who became blocked, so they gave some of their best advice.

“Go out to places where you’ve never been.” If you usually drink in pubs, go try a fancy wine studio, or go for a cooking lesson. Maybe you can try some other type of food other than burgers and pizza, go to a restaurant that is different than where you usually eat.

While you rediscover yourself and your possibilities, don’t even think about writing! It will come eventually. All these new adventure will make you wonder, and will motivate you to share all this knowledge that you have recently experienced with the world. But for sure, you will redeem your energy to feel passionate, which will lead you to write!

In the case if you already know your topic with sources and information, but you get stuck and don’t know how to continue, you can either go to have some fresh air (go to touch the pen of the statue “Anonymous” in the Vajdahunyad Castle, legend says it has a magical force), or just change perspective! Do more background research on the case and find other perspectives so that every reader can relate. Make more arguments, or more points to discuss. Never underestimate the power of other people’s opinions, as they are your readers, ask you friends!

While I was writing this article, I had writers block too. It took three weeks to write this article. Thus, through my research, I decided to test all this advice and see if it worked. Since I didn’t feel passionate about writing, I decided to forget it for a while. I tried new things, I went to study in three different coffee shops, instead of the one that I was used to. I tried places (lots of donut places) where I have never been before while I did not think of my article, not even for a minute. I have to announce that since I finished this article, I wrote another one! I can safely say, I am over writer’s block!

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