Overcoming Writer's Block | Teen Ink

Overcoming Writer's Block

February 20, 2011
By ConnorH BRONZE, San Angelo, Texas
ConnorH BRONZE, San Angelo, Texas
3 articles 0 photos 0 comments

I try to write sometimes, though I wouldn't consider myself a "writer" per se, as I'm certainly not paid to maintain my own poorly-visited website. Unnecessary self-deprecation aside, I do often have difficulty placing my thoughts in an organized manner on paper, or in this case, computer screen. I would presume many writers suffer from this problem at some point in their writing lives, but I would also presume that few of them subscribe to the method I tend to use when encountering this problem. I refer to this method as The Metaphorical Wall Dissolution Method. Let me tell you about it, or you can just go on with your Internet-life. Either way, I'm going to type into the computer, so I win.*


The Metaphorical Wall Dissolution Method

Step 1-Make the Wall Love You

Anytime an obstacle is in my life, I always try my best to make it move itself without having to lift a finger, or at least a hand. In this situation, the obstacle that exists is metaphorical (as we've established: see method name), so it's going to be a little more difficult to directly coax it into moving. Time to try some mind tricks, I say.

At this point, you and the wall haven't talked much, as it is metaphorical and A WALL (or BLOCK, if you're looking to split hairs or my thesis), so it's time to initiate some dialogue. Here is an example of such dialogue:

You: Hey, Block/Wall, how's it going?

Wall: Not that well. I'm a wall, and I'm here to block your ability to write articles about social networks.

(This is where you empathize with the awkward situation of the Wall)

You: Wow, that must be a tough job, always frustrating people while being a wall.

Wall: It really is. I mean, I wish I could talk to another one of my species every once in a while.

You: Wow, that does sound like a difficult time, you are having, Mr. Wall. I wish I could help you somehow...

Wall: I really don't think there is a way for you to help a cold, emotionless wall like myself.

You: I'll think about a solution. For now, let's just talk about politics and toss around the old pigskin.

Wall: What's a "pigskin"?

You: That's right, you're a wall completely focused on blocking thought processes. A pigskin is a football.

Wall: What's "football"?

You: You have a lot to learn, you silly Wall.

(You smile reassuringly, and a montage of you and The Wall becoming best friends occurs. A song by the Beatles plays, though it really doesn't matter which one.)

Step 2-Gaining Trust

The Wall has never felt emotion before, and you must understand this. You need to cultivate its thoughts in order to cultivate yours. I know how transient and genius that sounds, so bear with me. How can a Wall's trust be gained? One un-climactic word: Activities.

A) Take The Wall fishing- This is always relaxing, and The Wall needs to relax. It's probably got a lot of pent-up sadness from its years of frustration-causing. If it asks for a metaphorical massage in a non-creepy way, don't be scared to give The Wall one. When it sighs and looks off into the distance unblinkingly, tell it that you think "maybe it's getting to old for this" and "and needs to go to a retreat". Mind tricks, people. Mind tricks.

B) Go to mosaic class with The Wall- The whole point of this ordeal has been for you to overcome a lack of creativity, so it's time to try to bring out the creative side of you. Again, make sure The Wall understands what a "mosaic" is.*

*If The Wall asks for another massage while at mosaic class, give up writing. It wasn't meant for you. Your wall is too creepy to overcome.

C) Shopping Time- After your first two bonding activities, The Wall is starting to feel much better about itself, and may soon decide to leave you alone and pursue its life-long passion of living in a cult colony. This is the perfect time to go to the mall, upgrade The Wall's wardrobe (which consists of nothing, since it's a wall), and make its confidence level reach an all time high. The final step approaches, and it approaches in the next paragraph.

Step 3- Saying Goodbye To The Wall

This is the moment when things get really emotional. After building up this metaphorical relationship with The Wall, you have to part ways. The hardest part of this will be convincing The Wall to leave you alone from now on to concentrate on what you want to write about. In order to ensure that The Wall is gone forever, at least until the next Wall, you need to follow this dialogue to the letter:

You: You ever think about just up and leaving this place, Wall? (You look off into the distance)

Wall: Sometimes, I do. Why? Don't you?

You: I wish I could, Wall. But my time for leaving this cage has passed. I'm stuck here for good in this god-forsaken metaphorical town. But you? You could have a fresh start. (You look off into distance again, but more wistfully this time.)

Wall: You think so?

You: There's a whole new world out there for you, Wall. You don't have to just stand still and frustrate others anymore.

Wall: Being a metaphorical wall and metaphorically standing still is all I've ever known.

You: Well, maybe it's time to spread those metaphorical wings and fly? (you awkwardly mime flying)

Wall: (looks at ground) Maybe it is. But where should I go?

You: Wherever your dreams or the wind take you, Wall. Or however far you can get with the $20 I gave you the other day.

Wall: I think....(pauses, with a tear (only one) in his eye) it is time for me to go. Will I ever see you again?

You (smiling wryly): Maybe someday, Wall. Maybe someday.

(You turn and toss a quarter behind your back, for seemingly no reason, as you turn and walk away. After a short time, you turn for one more glance at The Wall.)

You: And Wall?

Wall: What, You? (for some reason he calls you by this name)

You: Say hello to my metaphorical complacency for me, will you?

Wall: No problem. (smiles, and vanishes).

(The Wall reappears)

Wall: Actually, there is a problem. How do you get to the 4th Street Subway Station from here?

You: Two lefts and a right, Wall. Two lefts and a right. (You say this with overly dramatic significance and symbolism.)

(The Wall vanishes, this time permanently, or so it seems temporarily, which makes no sense when you think about it. Oh well, you think to yourself.)

With the three steps of The Metaphorical Wall Dissolution Method now complete, your writer's block is gone. You can now write an unnecessarily long article about writer's block with almost no difficulty at all. How perfectly applicable and convenient.

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