This article is entitled Writer’s Block: A Phenomenon You Like To Avoid. It is part of a creative writing project for ieltsdeal.com. In this article, I have taken the opportunity to simplify the phenomenon ‘Writer’s Block’ to many people who are facing it all the time yet have very little idea about it. I’ve also discussed in brief the history, some causes and probable solutions to the condition. Hopefully, students will have a good idea about the matter by going through this article.
Writer’s Block: A Phenomenon You Like To Avoid
Will you be surprised if I say the British Singing prodigy Adele could not write for a period of time? Writer’s block is something explained as a peculiar state of mind which is, according to Wikipedia, “…primarily associated with writing, in which an author loses the ability to produce new work, or experiences a creative slowdown.” This awkward mental condition ranges in complexity starting from producing creative ideas to being incapable of generating original work for a given period of time. Fascinatingly, this condition is not a new one and more renowned people than Adele even had to deal with it. It is my hope in this article to provide you, mostly, the students, a short insight into this mental condition and suggest some steps by which you can rely on without any doubt. This is not any scientific writings, so do not worry.
This mental condition can be fatal in many cases. Successful writers like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Herman Melville, Joseph Mitchell faced the same problem in different parts of their career. The phenomenon was first described in detail by an Austrian-born American psychoanalyst Edmund Bergler in the year 1947. Herman Melville’s Writer’s block was an example before Edmund Bergler could explain the matter. Herman failed to compose any more novels after writing his masterpiece Moby-Dick.
Adele admitted that it was something crazy and she could explain why she could not finish writing a duet with her co-writer Jamie T and, most interestingly, it was her debut album ‘19’. She explained the situation in an interview with BBC 6 Music, “… . . we started writing a duet when I was writing my album but never got round to finishing it. It would be good to finish that.” Adele explained in another interview that it was not that she could not produce a song because she was suffering from any anguish. Actually, it was something reverse. She explained that she was more than happy and that created a kind of distraction because she generally wrote excellent lyrics when she was sad or upset about something.
This clearly indicates that Writer’s block does not depend on sufferings only. Though, most of the researches done on this phenomenon describes the causes such as the writer’s personal struggle in life, career, anguish, physical illness, depression, work-pressure, broken relationships, financial problems, etc. Some writers even ran out of inspiration or they became distracted by something that did not happen to them for years (Adele’s case). So, it is extremely difficult to identify the actual causes of this condition. However, the most familiar causes are related to mental depression over something. Some even go so far as to compare writer’s block with creativity shortage, though this notion is criticized by a handful of experts.
Students may face writer’s block during their school or college life and it is quite normal. There is nothing to be alarmed about. It may happen due to the failure of the trainers or tutors. Teachers are often seen to pressurize students to start writing on a given topic even though they did not explain how to write, what to write, how to start the writing process or even how to generate ideas. This is not acceptable because a teacher has taken the duty to train a student, not to force a student to produce an original.
So, now comes the big deal, how to solve this condition! Actually, there is nothing better to discuss this matter in groups because a group-discussion is something where chunks of ideas can come and different people can provide thoughts on different matters. Another step that can be considered is to brainstorm over an issue, write down the ideas on a piece of paper and then produce a general writing on the ideas. This writing can be checked by an expert later on who can suggest further improvements. Inspiration from peers and friends can be helpful in this respect. So, writer’s block is recoverable and students can do it with a little help from the surroundings.
One great thing? I could not find anything to write about for one whole week. Now, look! I wrote about something I was suffering from! Crazy, isn’t it?
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