We all know of this quite romantic tragedy–two star-crossed lovers: a pen and its beloved paper, both from very different worlds, they never seem to come fully in contact with each other because of their mediator’s unwilling ability to keep them apart. Unfortunate fate, is what it is. We all know the ending too. When the pen finally gets its much awaited chance to kiss the blank and boring face of the paper, the clock ticks to a morbid A.M. hour… time does not stop, ticking of seconds continues, and the paper is due for its anticipated grave–the mundane Dropbox or the shaky hands of the caffeinated professor. The pen has lost its beloved to the fate of due dates and sheer boredom of the task at hand, and the only lasting impression that the pen was able to leave upon its distant yet loved piece of paper was the kiss of its own God’s name. Tears cease to dry over this tragic phenomenon of unrequited love between pen and paper because it is retold and relived every day. Yet we still ask, why can’t the pen and paper end up together, just once? Well, that’s just the will of God. God being us, that is. You see, what this story is really about is what the pen had finally written on the paper: the name of the uninspired writer who was holding it. The uninspired writer, the procrastinator, the dilly-dallier, the writer blocked.
Does this tragic phenomenon not happen to all of us when confronted with the terrorizing task of an uninspiring assignment? Sitting in front of the radiating fry of our computer’s blue light for hours on end just figuring out where to start seems more illuminating than what really becomes of the end product–sometimes just our lonesome name. Our minds race with the thoughts we don’t have and that is an exhausting thing.
What flashes back to me when thinking of this is the horror of an episode of Spongebob Squarepants, in which the task at hand is to write “100 things not to do at a stoplight” before morning. Suddenly, from sitting at our writing desks in sweat and panic over what hasn’t been written yet, we find ourselves in the middle of a room on fire. I suppose by bringing up this very relatable instance of Spongebob’s own encounter with writer’s block, I pull inspiration for dealing with the problem itself. He seems to do many things before actually getting to the assignment, including a quick nap that wakes him to realize his reach to the ultimate brink of procrastination. Spongebob’s procrastination is writer’s block philosophy in a nutshell. Just do everything you possibly can before you wake up sweating from a terrorizing nightmare and realize you’ve done everything you possibly could to avoid the writing assignment up to that moment. You’re inspired.
Things to do when challenged by writer’s block:
-Go for a drive
-Go for a walk (environmentally favorable)
-Talk to a friend
-Pet a dog (or readily available animal)
-Take a nap
-Write a novel
-Read Romeo and Juliet
-Pay your rent
-Watch Spongebob Squarepants
-Or do what I did, write a blog post about writer’s block.
Gabrielle Tribelli | Staff Editor
Photo credited to: Gabrielle Tribelli