Blocking the ‘block’

Posted on Oct 30 2022 in From the Editor
Emily with laptop

By Emily Schilling

Here’s the thing about being a writer in a deadline-oriented job: Sometimes your deadlines and your brain don’t see eye to eye. Words don’t always travel from the cortex to the fingertips and finally to the computer screen as quickly as I’d like. (Hello, writer’s block!)

Sometimes I waste precious time staring out the window waiting for inspiration to hit. Then, confident that I’ve discovered my “a-ha” moment, start expounding on a train of thought that ultimately leads nowhere. Too often, I don’t realize my ideas are hitting a dead end until I read over my carefully wordsmithed paragraphs with fresh eyes the next day and end up nixing all of them. Thank goodness for the clarity new days bring!

But when words do flow freely, there’s nothing like a well-turned phrase and a point that can be made succinctly and cleverly thanks to an ample vocabulary and a mind that is usually editing what I write before I press the keys. I enjoy the writing process immensely when that happens. 

I am sometimes asked where I find ideas to write about. The answer: Anywhere and everywhere. Sometimes I read articles that enlighten or amuse me, and I can’t help but comment on the content. I might have some thoughts about an event occurring that month or things happening in my life that you might relate to. Often, I wonder if I should amp up the adventure in my life to give me more fodder for my columns. That thought is actually kind of funny: shouldn’t living life more fully be enough of a goal itself? Why am I more concerned about writing about it? 

That’s easy to answer. I’ll do whatever it takes to create topics to avoid writer’s block. Well, anything within reason! 

EMILY SCHILLING is editor of Indiana Connection