Struggling with writer's block can be one of the most frustrating things liberal arts students can face. It can feel as though you're literally hitting a wall in your creative flow, and it inhibits any sense of forward movement, whether it strikes for a few minutes or a few days.
If you're dealing with a case of writer's block, don't get discouraged. Every great writer has felt at a loss for words at some point. Because it's a common phenomenon, there are many ways to get unstuck, regardless of your particular writing style.
Read on to find out a few ways that can get you back into the flow of writing next time you're up against writer's block!
Take a Brisk Walk Around Campus
If you're unable to think of a catchy, creative sentence to begin an assignment or are stuck on finding the right verb in the middle of an essay, take a walk. Many people have heard by now that there's a link between exercise and increased brain function and creativity, and there have been many studies that support that link.
There are several reasons that a casual stroll can alter creativity and help with writer's block:
- walking releases endorphins which help improve your mood
- getting some fresh air can reenergize your thinking process
- a few minutes away from your work can help you come back to it from a new angle
With such a small school, you never know who you'll bump into walking around the campus of your liberal arts college in Chicago. You may even get a few pointers on your current assignment!
Freewriting: A Great Exercise for Liberal Arts Students
Freewriting is an exercise used to simultaneously clear the mind, get some inspiration, and gain momentum in writing. It can be practiced in the morning or as a prewriting technique. It's a no-holds-barred exercise aimed at overcoming writer's block before it happens!
Students at a great books college certainly know what it's like to have a head full of ideas. While this is usually the source of great inspiration, too many ideas can sometimes serve as background noise when sitting down and trying to write out an assignment.
It is recommended to practice freewriting with a pencil or pen and a pad of paper. Students who want to give it a try should do it for a set amount of time, usually 10 minutes, or write enough to fill a set amount of loose leaf pages (usually 2-3). You literally sit down and write whatever comes to mind with no regard to grammar, spelling or format. If initial thoughts or ideas start to form on your topic, then great, but if not, keep writing! Even filling 3 pages with the words "blah, blah, blah" will get your mind clearer, warmed-up and ready for the work ahead.
Try Switching to Another Creative Outlet
Another way to overcome writer's block is to step away from your assignment and do anything creative. Students attending small liberal arts colleges shouldn't have any difficulty thinking up a creative activity! You can draw, paint, play or listen to some music, admire some architecture, make a scrapbook. Even other forms of writing can be good, such as writing a poem or working on a blog.
The goal is to keep working the creative part of your brain so that when you turn your attention back to your assignment after a little while, you'll tap back into the flow of writing effortlessly!
Do you know of any other effective ways of overcoming writer's block?