“You don’t try to reverse the river or get it to jump over a mountain, you harness its flow and energy to gently urge that it join up with other tributaries.” David Byrne
Contrary to popular belief, I don’t think that writing is a lonesome activity. Granted, like many writers I spend a lot of time by myself in a room, working on a computer. Seeing as I maintain my focus best when there’s no-one else around, I often choose to be on my own when I write. However, the writing process isn’t merely comprised of typing words on a page. In fact, there are various important facets to writing that involve other people, and so writing, for me, becomes a game of communication and collaboration. Not only has such collaboration enabled me to write higher quality texts, but I also find it energizing and motivating.
Continue reading “Synergy: Writers and Editors in Collaboration”
“Dance above the surface of the world. Let your thoughts lift you into creativity that is not hampered by opinion.”
— Red Haircrow
Beginnings are always the hardest. Sitting at your computer, chasing that perfect opening line across your mindscape, searching, constantly searching. In what lair is it hidden? In what vault is it kept? In what forge is it created? And where are these places located? The mind is a strange realm, indeed; there’s so much uncharted territory that has yet to be discovered. Continue reading “The Writer’s High”
Writer’s Block is looking for fresh, new, enthusiastic, talented, and creative editorial board members! Do you like writing, editing, or do you have any journalistic aspirations? Then join the Writer’s Block editorial board!
What/ who is Writer’s Block?
Writer’s Block magazine is the student magazine of the English department at the University of Amsterdam, but we have an international readership and contributors from across the globe. In our magazine, which is released every 3 months, we publish articles, essays, reviews, interviews, short stories, poetry, photography, and artwork. Even though the magazines are published in English, we also encourage students from outside the English department to join our board, so it doesn’t matter if you study astrophysics, law, pedagogy, history, or play the clarinet in the national orchestra – everyone is welcome at Writer’s Block. Continue reading “Writer’s Block Is Looking For New Editorial Board Members!”
“Show the readers everything, tell them nothing.”
— Ernest Hemingway
Show-don’t-tell is bullshit.
Now, before a lynch mob of angry keyboard warriors attempts to verbally slay me, let’s all calm down and establish a context. Continue reading “Show-Don’t-Tell Is Bullshit!”
“Your head’s like mine, like all our heads; big enough to contain every god and devil there ever was. Big enough to hold the weight of oceans and the turning stars. Whole universes fit in there! But what do we choose to keep in this miraculous cabinet? Little broken things, sad trinkets that we play with over and over. The world turns our key and we play the same little tune again and again and we think that tune’s all we are.”
— Grant Morrison
All right, David, brings us up to speed:
By now you may have the activity-part of writing down, but maybe you feel you are still missing a kind of you-ness; a recognizable voice with enough originality to stand on its own. You look, and you look, and there seems to be nothing ‘you’ – no truth to speak, no solid ground to kick off from – only mush and mist.
Have you not found your artistic voice yet? Are you uncertain you ever will? You are not alone in having these thoughts.
Today, Casper has two urgent questions for you:
- Is it important for you that you find your voice?
- Why or why not?
Continue reading “Writer’s Block Doesn’t Exist – Part 5: Death of Ideas”
You might already have heard of her through Instagram or Tumblr, or maybe you’ve seen her book lying beside all of the other ‘cool’ books in the book section of the Urban Outfitter’s store. Rupi Kaur is a Canadian author, feminist activist and illustrator in her twenties who has published two books of poetry accompanied by her own illustrations. Continue reading “Rupi Kaur’s poetry in the age of social media”
“[S]topping a piece of work just because it’s hard, either emotionally or imaginatively, is a bad idea. Sometimes you have to go on when you don’t feel like it, and sometimes you’re doing good work when it feels like all you’re managing is to shovel shit from a sitting position.”
— Stephen King
Let’s recap last essay with my esteemed colleague, David Kleinsteuber:
If we describe the phenomenon of writer’s block as “something that blocks an artist off from creating art”, then where could we locate the source of the blockage? And, perhaps more urgently, what can the artist do about it?
In this brand new Writer’s Block series, we join our editor Casper as he tackles a different facet of the phenomenon of writer’s block each article, while in the meantime he makes the argument that writer’s block does not in fact exist. Casper stresses that this statement is not an imposition, but rather a provocation for artists to pose questions about their creative process.
The first question being: why do you write?
Continue reading “Writer’s Block Doesn’t Exist – Part 2: Inspired by Spirit”