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Antidotes for Writers Block

UCLA Theater, Film, and Television student Venk Potula shares his advice on how to go about finishing that term paper. logo

I can offer you quick, simple, perhaps obvious, antidotes for your writer's block poison.
(courtesy of Microsoft Office Images)
We all know of the infamous Writer's Block, who lingers in your brain with a trench coat and cigarette. He takes a puff of his cig and calmly tells you tantalizing thoughts like, "You're hungry. Eat a gallon of ice cream. You'll feel better. Forget about writing this paper, go indulge yourself in a tasty treat."

Most people would try to block out the writer's block from saying all those tempting things, but end up just getting in a horrid fight with him and eventually give up and eat the ice cream.

And that is why I am here. I can offer you quick, simple, perhaps obvious, antidotes for your writer's block poison.


1. Take a shower before you write.

a. Sounds strange, but maybe you've noticed that whenever you're in the shower, you start to go inside your brain and think about random things. Some people even sing! This is because you are engaging your right brain, which is associated with the creative aspect of learning. (If you want to know how this works, leave a comment below and I will gladly elaborate for you.)

b. Immediately after you dry off, don't utter a single word (literally), and start typing that paper away. You'll be surprised how easy the ideas will flow right out of your brain.

2. Write about something that pisses you off.

a. IT'S OKAY TO COMPLAIN. Let all the venting out on this paper. If you find out that your girlfriend just cheated on you, let all those emotions come out on paper. This gives you a specific point of view that can help create a character or develop an idea for a scene or subject.

b. Even if your topic has nothing to do what pisses you off, you will notice that it will be easier to write about the topic after throwing up those precious letters on paper. It's all about the creative flow you are in.

3. Take a break.

a. Your 10 page final paper is due in 5 hours. You're only 10 words through. Your world is crumbling down and you feel like dying. You tell me, "I've already taken a shower, Venk! I've already written about my cheating ex-girlfriend! What should I do now?" RELAX. It's all good. That paper will get finished. Take a 30-minute break. Stand up, stretch, and get a quick bite to eat. Read a magazine. Just forget about that paper for a while.

b. It is really easy to overwork yourself, especially if you have a deadline. It never helps because you only stress yourself even more and pass out. This is especially demanding in screenwriting because writers have to finish the spec script with limited notice and a limited timeframe.

Well there you have it. I'm not saying there are not other ways, but that these are three quick and easy tips to get through that tough paper, play, screenplay…whatever it is you write; you get the idea.

Until next time!


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