The Writer's Den

UCLA's creative writing student group


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“…but I don’t know what to write about.”

Sometimes it takes music, as Sophie suggested. Sometimes it takes words. Sometimes it takes visual images. Sometimes it takes silence.

Sometimes it takes everything.

Scroll if you have writer’s block and need inspiration. Or if you just want to read pretty words and see pretty pictures.

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Music and Writing

Whenever I’m having trouble trying to find the words for my story, I do one of two things:

  1. I shave my legs
  2. I listen to music

Both work. Miraculously. As soon as my legs are smooth/patch worked with razor cuts or as soon as I’m plugged into music, the words suddenly start flowing out of me again. Writer’s block instantly gone.

Since I’m not really keen on spending a whole blog post talking about the art of leg shaving (which I have not yet perfected—I can never really get all the little hairs off of those pesky knees), I’m going to tell you a couple of ways I use music to write. And maybe it’ll help you…maybe.

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Creative Exercise #2: Shake Up Your Routine

Hey guys, this is a continuation of the first blog I wrote on the book A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative.  The book is funny, short, and very insightful, so I highly recommend it.

As a human you are a creature of habit; you form routines: Wake up, yawn, brush your teeth, put in your contacts, shave, dress, eat, leave, get to class, sit in the back, check your facebook status, etc.  If you were to step back and watch video footage of how you spent each of the previous five days of your life, you would probably be shocked at how similar each of those days were to each other.

One of the points the book makes is that if you want to be creative, you have to shake up your daily routine.  Try shaving on the left side of your face first instead of the right side (for you ladies, I guess the left leg instead of the right leg)  Try putting your alarm on the floor instead of on the desk.  Sit in a different seat in class.  Try a new food.  Watch Spiderman instead of Batman, make human noises instead of goat noises, just DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT.

If you don’t shake up your routine, if you go through the same motions every day, how can you possibly expect to come up with a creative new story idea, let alone be a creative, interesting person?