Saturday, September 19, 2009

Day 35- In Search of A Cure for Writer's Block

Saturday afternoon: Sigh. I've cleaned the house from top to bottom, finished the laundry, worked out, and even brushed the cat (much to her dismay). There's nothing left except to buckle down and write this history paper - my mid-term exam.

As any writer will tell you, the hardest part is getting started. There is nothing as daunting as a blank sheet of paper (or a blank computer screen, in my case). Many is the night just this week that I have lain awake and mentally written a brilliant article or even a blog post, only to awaken the next morning and remember none of my sparkling words and ideas. I have tried keeping a notepad and pen on the bedside table. Unfortunately, on the rare occasion when I remember it was there, I can never seem to read my handwriting the next day. It's a conundrum. Advice to myself - relax. The words will come when we least expect them.

My project today is an essay on the late Dr. John R. Brinkley, one of our country's most famous flim-flam men, a huckster extraordinaire, and a pivotal player in the birth of modern media. From early marketing strategy to the first radio advertising, this guy literally changed the face of American Media from about 1915 - 1938. My problem, as per usual, is where to begin. I've read this riveting book by author Pope Brock (Charlatan {2008}, a NY Times bestseller) but I have too many of his words still in my head. I don't want to simply re-state what is in the book. Rest assured, I know the words will come. They always do. Still, it's frustrating to never quite complete my daily to-do list whenever it contains a writing assignment. My words just flow on their own schedule, and not the one set by my rational mind.

The sun has just peeked out for the first time today. Perhaps a walk will clear the cobwebs and put me in the "write" frame of mind. If you know a sure-fire cure for writer's block....feel free to share it in the comments.

For now, write on!

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