10 Things I’ve Been Doing While Struggling With Writer’s Block


Writer’s block is the worst thing in the entire world. I spend days fretting over my inability to write anything of substance and then I tell myself that tonight’s the night I’m gonna sit right down and write myself a million stories. I have the best of intentions … until I actually sit my ass down and try to type anything of value.

Because why write when you can procrastinate? And especially if you can procrastinate as well as me. Here’s what I get up to when I should be type-type-typing away.

1. Prowling Craiglist. I like to look for French Provincial furniture, cool old lady-style lamps and porcelain swan statues. And then I get going in the “free” section and start thinking, “Oh wow, 800 FREE chocolate-mint candies from a restaurant that went out of business? Well I LOVE those and they’re FREE! That could be useful.” I also just really enjoy seeing what people decide to give away for free and what they think is worth $5. I have become a person who buys things on Craigslist. Whatever! I have a new house to furnish.

2. Getting into long, nonsensical group chat conversations with my girlfriends and sending each other pictures of our pets, outfits and naked boobs. Do dudes know that girls do this? We do. Sometimes I step away from my phone for an hour and return to 126 text messages. Girls are crazy, man.

3. Finding the best shitty scary movies on cable or onDemand. Like right now, as I’ve just tuned into “The Hills Have Eyes.” onDemand is pretty great for really crappy ‘70s-era horror movies, too. I am soooooo not going to sleep tonight.

4. Going to places that usually inspire me, like the Mall of America, the lake or the thrift store. There’s something comforting about being in a huge throng of people on a Tuesday night when you’re lonely, or wandering through aisles of someone else’s possessions. Usually I can get some mileage out of something or someone I find in a public place such as this, but it hasn’t been working lately. Even when I’m in a fitting room wearing a yellow wool suit that belonged to someone, anyone, its fabric still smelling of basement and boxes, I can’t think to write anything about the woman who may have inhabited that suit. Who was she? I couldn’t tell you. When your writer’s block is really bad, you can’t find inspiration anywhere.

5. Rereading all my old Facebook Notes from 2006-2008. I used it as a journal of sorts and sometimes I plumb its depths for bits and pieces I can expand upon. Other times I just wince at how shitty some of the writing is.

6. Getting happy hour drunk and buying shoes. Um, oops? Sometimes you have a glass of wine or two and then bam! You’re buying new Birkenstocks, or Star Wars Vans for you and your roommate, or cowboy boots … not that I know anything about this.

7. Falling into Instagram K-holes of tattoo artists. I just found a guy who did a super-realistic portrait of Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly in “Step Brothers” on someone’s calf. I want to marry that person.

8. Or watching cats have sex on YouTube. Did you know you can do that? It’s weird.

9. Bubble baths. Sometimes they help. Most of the time I just listen to Janet Jackson’s “The Velvet Rope” and zone out looking at Twitter, but SOMETIMES they’ll soothe me into being creative. Or I’ll just look at my spider veins instead.

10. Trying really hard to get into “The Wire.” Or “Breaking Bad.” Or whatever. It never works. I hate those shows. I’d rather just watch Kardashians again and then stalk Scott Disick’s Instagram feed, the world’s greatest blessing. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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