Writer’s block?


It plagues us all. Writer’s block kills more mojo than Kanye West, and unfortunately, you don’t need to be T-Swift to fall victim to its evils.

The best ideas come when you’re not staring at a blank computer screen–driving down the freeway, sipping on orange soda, watching Mad Men, etc. But when there’s just not enough time to take a jaunt in the woods in search of your elusive thinking cap, here’s some alternatives. Special thanks to Ivan at creativebits.org.

  1. Examine your subject wearing pink glasses.
  2. Write down 21 objects that the subject reminds you of.
  3. Look at your subject as if you were a priest/astronaut/vampire/prostitute.
  4. Take off your shoes.
  5. Put the subject name under-water.
  6. Write the subject on a bun.
  7. Smell a flower or tea leaves.
  8. Pray like a ninja.
  9. Make a paper plane.
  10. Think of a matching car for your subject.
  11. Relax. Get up, walk around. Scream if you need to.

Undoubtedly you’ll come up with something. If all else fails, start surfing the Web. Just stay off YouTube, and/or anything that involves music awards, rappers, and deely-bopper country singers. Godspeed, brainstormer.


5 responses to “Writer’s block?

  1. This is a fun, helpful post. In J91, we’ve done a couple “story storms” where we think of as many story ideas we can as quickly as we can – that’s another helpful way to go about it.

    Look at a picture related to your subject or, if you don’t have a determined subject, look at a picture of really anything, and type down every story that could possibly relate for 10 minutes. You’ll be surprised at your results.

  2. Ann Schnoebelen

    I really enjoy suggestions like this. I think every once a while (just every once and a while mind you) we writers and reporters may start to take ourselves a bit too seriously. In these times, it’s especially nice to take off your shoes, throw on a pair of pink glasses, and pray like a ninja.
    …or whatever it is you do to develop a creative story idea.

    These are some great suggestions, and Ivan’s right, “ideation is best done subconsciously.” I’ve had some great story angles come out of nowhere at some rather interesting moments: while taking an exam, the middle of mass, or grocery shopping for example.

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who appreciates these things.

  3. A bit of silliness never hurt anyone. Especially a writer.

    I also like the site below — it lists hundreds of official collective nouns (like a pride of lions). Just imagining some of these groups of animals gets the creative juices flowing. “An implausibility of gnus.” How can you not think of something fabulous to write after that?


  4. Pray like a ninja. I do this from time to time. It makes me write like the Karate Kid. Writers beware! Lol, really fun post. Thanks!

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