Writer’s Block


July 22, 2013 by NowhereButPop

By Andrew Doscas

I have writer’s block again.  Unlike the bout of WB I was struggling with approximately 9 months ago, wherein I felt I had absolutely nothing to say, this time around, I don’t know where to go with what I have.  I’ve been mulling through a few ideas, but at best they are half formed and underdeveloped, yet akin to a child throwing a temper tantrum that is screaming maniacally for attention despite (or perhaps because of) their incoherence and inanity.

Such ideas that have come to mind which I believe show potential include: an article about Use Your Illusion and why it is one of the greatest rock albums of all time, an article where I completely divulge myself as a writer and explore 10 absolute truths that I’ve discovered over my tenure of life, and an album review of The Who’s Who Are You.  The point of this article is that by trying to analyze the causes and remedies of writers I can provide the latter by understanding the former.

It’s very strange because more often than not I can feel the onset of a bout coming before it actually hits.  Just like the weather, or the economy my levels of creativity vary in a pseudo-typical pattern of highs and lows.  Usually after a period of high productivity in a short amount of time, I’ll be spent with nothing to write about for a week or two, almost as if my brain has to cool itself off.  And after a period of no productivity, something will just click, there’ll be a spark that I can wrap myself around and light a path of new ideas and avenues of thought.  Essentially, it’s just a basic boom and bust cycle.  At my best, it seems as though the thoughts themselves are coming to me in an almost prophetic manner wherein I’m almost a vessel of my own creativity, instead of actually conjuring these thoughts myself.

Following last week’s articles, I was fully aware that a bout of WB was on the horizon; I could feel the faucet begin to close.  The articles I wrote about the notion of villainy and the top disappointing moments in Yankee history were the last hurrah of that creative force.[1]  This period of nothingness is different from last time though because of the symptoms involved.  Last time, I felt as though I had nothing to say, and that was because I had no inspiration, no muse so to speak.  It felt like I was just standing in the middle of a train station waiting for the train to come.  I didn’t know what time the train would come, or where it would go, but I was waiting for it nonetheless.  Suffice to say I found inspiration, and a manic sense of creativity that I have yet to find again.  I needed an external stimuli to get the process going despite the fact that usually I’m very self-sustaining.  After that period I realized that there really isn’t any greater motivation or source of inspiration than a feeling that is brought about or provided by someone else.

That does make sense though, as I’ve illustrated in a previous article detailing how the many women in his life inspired Pablo Picasso to be as great as he was.   Music is used in much the same way, just as a love would get us to feel, music gets us to think.  It shouldn’t come as any surprise that most Broadway plays are written to an album played on a loop.

The point where I’m at is literally at a crossroads.  I know what it is that is going to inspire my next creative outburst, but what I don’t know is the emotional response that this newest source of inspiration will illicit.  It feels like I’m floating in the middle of the ocean and within five minutes there’ll be either a hurricane, or a lifeboat that passes by.  Whereas the last time I had WB, it felt like a void, I was waiting for the muse herself so to speak; this time around I’m merely waiting to see what form my thoughts and ideas will take in response to an external stimuli.  Granted it’ll either take a form similar to either Picasso’s “Blue Period” or his “Pink Period”.[2]  This is a very strange and abstract feeling; I don’t like it.

[1] Those articles are very good; I highly recommend reading them next.

[2] This is the 4th time I’ve brought up Picasso when talking about inspiration and creativity.  I think it’s a perfect example and is at the very least somewhat applicable.


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