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I Have Complete Writer's Block

Posts: 1816
on 05/02/2012

I've been sitting here all day contemplating articles, tatting about with research, not writing a word.

You nearly had another installation of 'Applications of the Death Penalty'; you almost learned about the Australian billionaire building a replica of Titanic; there could have been a review of the book 'Voices of Titanic', or an exploration of the manga 'Black Butler'.

I've refreshed my memory about Hadrian and Antinous; then disappeared off into gay marriage planners.

I've been listening to Syd Barrett's Dark Globe on repeat. You could easily have had a Wizzle about a single song, which no-one but die-hard Barrett fans could probably love. Or more about bards wilting in the limelight and retreating home to hide from the pressure.

You might have even read about the Menai Massacre. I've stood on those shores. I have the photographs to illustrate it.

Here for hours and nothing, just frustration and the feeling that my imagination has been pre-empted.

How do you even get out of a funk like this? 




Posts: 232
on 05/02/2012

Very frustrating, Jo. But perhaps you just need a bit of a break - sometimes our minds are trying to tell us something and we don't want to listen. Relax and do something entirely different and the Writer's Block will subside at some point!

Posts: 699
on 05/02/2012

Sounds like you need a brisk walk and to do something completely different for an afternoon. I usually hang out in the garden and pull lots of weeds when I get like that.

Posts: 1816
on 05/02/2012

I've now got completely side-tracked by the people who think that Dark Globe is a love song!

Yeah, time for a break.


Posts: 26
on 05/02/2012

Take a small brake, Jo, and enjoy the sun! It will come to you! 

Even if that was an other story about Titanic, I would read it. I love your articles and reading them brings so many new interesting information. I am sure Titanic 2 would bring something new and interesting too. ;)

Just stay positive! Have a beer! 


See more of my work: Rabies: the Oldest Disease and my Zazzle store: M&I Zazzle Store blog
Posts: 3100
on 05/02/2012

A few ideas - what people ask in Google:


how long can zombies live
how long can zucchini stay in the fridge
how long can zits last
how long can zebras live
how long can zinfandel age
how long can zippo stay lit
how long can you live without food
how long can you live without water
how long can you go without sleep
how long can you freeze meat
how long can you use milk
how long can you store breast milk
how long can you freeze chicken
how long can xanax be detected in your urine
how long can xanax withdrawals last
how long can whales hold their breath
how long can water be stored
how long can weed stay in your system
how long can wine stay open
how long can viral infections last
how long can virus live on surfaces
how long can vegetable soup stay in the fridge
how long can u live with hiv
how long can the flu last
how long can tuna stay in the fridge
how long can turtles hold their breath
how long can tortoises live
how long can the stomach flu last
how long can shrimp stay in the fridge
how long can steak stay in the fridge
how long can stress delay your period
how long can sushi be refrigerated
how long can raw fish stay in the fridge
how long can rabbits live
how long can rice sit out
how long can roses stay out of water
how long can quiche sit out
how long can queso sit out
how long can quiche be frozen
how long can queen ants live
how long can pizza sit out
how long can pork stay in the fridge
how long can panic attacks last
how long can potato salad sit out
how long can postpartum depression last
how long can puppies hold their pee
how long can pancake batter last in the fridge
how long can pubic hair grow
how long can orange juice sit out
how long can ovulation pain last
how long can orchids live
how long can oysters stay in the fridge
how long can onions last in the fridge
how long can nicotine withdrawal last
how long can newborns go without pooping
how long can migraines last
how long can mayo sit out
how long can lice live off the body
how long can leftovers sit out
how long can labor last
how long can lobsters live out of water
how long can lasagna sit out
how long can kids stay on parents insurance
how long can koi live
how long can ketchup sit out
how long can kennel cough last
how long can kids have a fever
how long can kerosene be stored
how long can kefir sit out
how long can kimchi last
how long can kale keep
how long can juice sit out
how long can jet lag last
how long can jury duty last
how long can jelly be left out
how long can jock itch last
how long can jello sit out
how long can jellyfish live
how long can juice from a juicer last
how long can jerky last
how long can it take to get pregnant
how long can i collect unemployment
how long can i take mucinex
how long can i drive on a spare
how long can heartburn last
how long can herpes be dormant
how long can hiv be dormant
how long can gasoline be stored
how long can goldfish go without food
how long can gas pains last
how long can gastroenteritis last
how long can eggs sit out
how long can dolphins stay under water
how long can dogs hold it
how long can dog hold pee

Achim "Chef Keem" Thiemermann is the co-founder of a pretty cool new platform, yeah -
Posts: 1816
on 05/02/2012

I giggled my way through some of them! :)


Posts: 338
on 05/02/2012

I agree with Digby. Get outdoors for a walk. Nature and exercise are both very invigorating. It get my best ideas during or after a walk in the park. It seems my muse hides there among the trees and picnic tables.

Posts: 1816
on 05/02/2012

Thank you all for the advice. :)  I really should get a dog...

I did have a goldfish. His name was Syd, but he died a couple of weeks ago. He was no good for going on walks anyway. *sigh*

Posts: 1210
on 05/02/2012

@JoHarrington You've inspired me to write a wizzle on writers block and how to break the spell :) I often had to come up with ways to do this in my early days of writing and especially to give my writers ideas (when I outsourced I often would help them with a few angles)

@Keem Great list, humorous too!

@Ryank - Great idea, documentaries help a great deal, just watched "Aftermath Population zero", "Thrive", a bunch of E! THS... they even have a documentary channel out here...

@Jimmie, the walk does help a great deal, it clears the mind by removing you from your "Native" environment where associations run ramped in your mind (bogging you down by your other work and all the time you spent staring into the room... the best walk for creativity is to boldly go where you haven't gone before (at least not recently)... go down childhood lane and sit on a swing to rekindle that child like exubernce, you'd be surprised how much of your childhood memories are associated with the creative centers of your brain!

Another idea is to get into a stimulating conversation with someone you can rap pretty well with- that jars loose all sorts of associative memories that will blend with the creative centers and get the juices rolling. I tend to keep a pad of paper next to my bed at night and often while I'm in that zone before sleep my mind won't shut up- I write down ideas I get so I have a backup list of creative ideas. The mind slips into theta just before you pass out and that is the state creativity lives in (why you can't shut the brain off before sleep usually).


Posts: 1816
on 05/02/2012

Wendy - Looking forward to reading the popcorn articles.  And thank you for the implied compliment!

Jerrico - At least my writer's block is inspiring someone.  I'll go and read your article now.  *returns from your profile*  Actually I'll wait until you've posted it to read it!  LOL

Posts: 1210
on 05/02/2012

HAHA...  nice!

Sorry it won't be up for a few days :( My boss wants me to make some tutorial videos and that's super time consuming but I'll try to get it up tomorrow sometime or write it later tonight, I have some great ideas I think you'll find useful :) I may even make a video outlining some of the cool tricks I use to spark my imagination (I'm dying to make some video's for wizzley)....

But right quick here's some things to try:

1. Go to, type in a keyword of something your interested in and comb through the images that pop up until something sparks. I find this works incredibly well. I would also, if you see an image that makes you think, click on it and visit the page it's on, sometimes just reading other peoples work on a topic helps...

2. Go to Youtube and start searching for videos using keywords or just randomly go to a video, then start combing through the youtuber's other vids and use networking to move about the site (watch one video, then click another then another which will land you on several pages).

3. One thing I find useful when I'm blocked is to open word and just start rambling. Write about ANYTHING, it doesn't matter what, what this does is start activating associative chains in your memory and as you write you will find yourself jumping from topic to topic (this is encouraged, it's not an article your writing but rather free association of ideas)... you will find that this wakes the writer in you up but simultaneously will start fleshing out what kinds of things you would enjoy writing on.

4. Use free associative keyword writing. Open a text file and start with a keyword. Using ideas from the game "telephone" (that's that ancient device that used to be tethered to a wall by a long cord and a spiral cord, people used to use them to call one another haha)... write a word, then write 10 words that come to mind when you say it aloud. From that list of words (10 or whatever comes to mind quickly, don't take too much time trying to make up/bring up words)... pick one from THAT list, then repeat the process. By the time you reach the 10th word with 10 word associations to it you'll have reached into your skull deep enough to find what you really want to write about- use that to repeat ideas in 1 and 2 above...

When it comes to creative writing and writers block what generally blocks you is motivation and interest. If you don't have a topic your interested in, writing about it is boring and tedious, hence the block. If you don't have a topic your interested in it also blocks motivation to want to write about it.

hope this helps ya in the meantime.

Posts: 626
on 05/03/2012

Jo - what's wrong with doing associated things, and not actually writing?

I find research stimulating in itself.

I find Keyword Research interesting.

I find bringing things together, and organising them for later, to be refreshing.

I like finding new places to hang-out online.

I enjoy doing all the things that are not writing, but stimulate me to write.

And when the time comes, and your writing juices are flowing, the outflow is generally good, and from the heart.

Writing should not be a chore. Forcing yourself to do something when it is not the right time makes it a chore. Do that and you will become disenchanted.

It is not a race. It is not necessary to create hundreds of articles in the shortest possible time. It is about thinking, and dreaming, and concocting. A writer is an alchemist of language - bringing bits of old dull metal together to make a sparkling golden elixir of words. Words that live on for eternity. But alchemists must consider their ingredients carefully. When writers block arrives just start lining up the ingredients ready for the time when the chemical reaction has the correct entropic conditions to have the maximum chance of success.

Don't let it get you down: revel in it.

Posts: 1087
on 05/03/2012

Jo, you have done so much writing there is nothing left to write... Yell

Just kidding of course.

Have a shower or do some mundane task and just let your mind wander.  You don't have to listen to me - I am not a writer so I really can't relate, but that is when I get my best creative ideas.

You'll be typing away in no time, I'm sure.

Posts: 979
on 05/03/2012

I get out into the fresh air and commune with nature 


Here's a picture of my swing in my back yard, an example of a great place to breath in some fresh air and be rejuvenated by nature.

Katie McMurray
Posts: 979
on 05/03/2012

Oh and sometimes I clean my house really good, crank up some loud music and make the house spotless.  This has an amazing impact on my creative flow.  

OR working out really hard.

Give yourself what its been missing out on, we have many basic needs that go unmet if we spend to much time writing.  You're not a machine dear and to think of the intensity of the subject matter you've been covering, that in-itself is enough to make you need a long weekend at the beach or other...

Katie McMurray
Posts: 769
on 05/04/2012

Some of this has already been said, but when I find myself either so frustrated that I cannot write or stuck, I move away from my computer, and do something else.  Clean my house, go for a walk, do something creative, getting moving does seem to get the blood pumping again, and the brain unstuck from whatever it is stuck on.  Seems to help me work through problems too, and when I go back an hour later or so, I am coming fresh to the problem.


Paula Atwell (aka lakeerieartists) is the owner of an online art gallery, Lake Erie Artists Gallery and a freelance writer
Posts: 699
on 05/04/2012

Sometimes I think writer's block is our body's way of telling us that we need to move more! I mean we sit at our computers for hours at a time. This probably isn't a good thing for us.

Posts: 1816
on 05/04/2012

Thank you all for your wonderful advice. I have spent the last couple of days writing now, but it's all on the same subject. You've already had two articles about Syd Barrett, you're about to get another one.

And it's a monster!  Even by my long article standards, it could well be a contender for the longest ever.  It's everything that you could ever have wanted to know about The Madcap Laughs.  I thought it would be so short as well...

I'll hopefully actually finish it tomorrow, then see about posting on other subjects.

Thanks again for all of  your suggestions though. They are very well appreciated.

Posts: 205
on 05/05/2012

Well since everyone has answered already. I know for myself when I get into that writers block 'funk' I either write what I can for 5 minutes, to see if the block will become undone OR

Go and do something else entirely and get back to the 'blockage' at another time.


On a side note , this is much easier and better to read through these forums than wading through forums about religious, political and how do I get my ex back guff as found on some other sites. Laughing


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