Lonna Whiting

Crafty writer, strategic thinker, curious learner.

Perched on the corner of a blank page

Here’s what I’m staring at right now.

Screen Shot 2013-01-17 at 11.03.01 AMYep, a blank page. It’s been like that for about ten minutes now. The cursor blinks at me like a Do Not Walk sign on an empty street. I’m standing at the corner of that street and obeying the signal, even though there’s not a chance in hell that anything bad could happen if I just go for it. Make my move. Cross the street. Cross it already! Write that first goddamn sentence, even if it’s the shittiest thing ever to be typed on a computer in the history of all computer typing!

But I just won’t budge. Eventually this page needs to be filled with inspiring copy that’s suppose to encourage moms-to-be to choose Dr. X over Dr. Y because Dr. X has a better team …

Screen Shot 2013-01-17 at 11.28.44 AM

Get the cliches out of the way … and a little inappropriateness. Chuckle. Delete.

Repeat.

There’s not much I can do when I have writer’s block. Others have told me to get up and go for a walk, but when I do that I just find myself loitering by the break room in the off-chance that there will be free food. I try listening to relaxing music but then I start falling asleep. Music with vocals are out of the picture because then I start writing copy that sounds like the song I’m listening to at the moment. I’ve tried free writing. Foot tapping. Self-massage. Pinterest. Facebook. Googling mysterious illnesses. I’ve tried calling other writer friends for inspiration and encouragement. I’ve tried just staring at the white void of the blank page in front of me as the minutes make me older.

Time. Is there any worse enemy?

Actually, time isn’t all that bad. Eventually I’ll get somewhere. I’ll imagine Dr. X is this heroic OB/GYN character who is so awesome at delivering babies he can do it drunk using only his left foot. I’ll pretend the delivery room is a magical palace where moms and dads get to sip on mimosas and when the nurse calls out “PUSH,” all the mom has to do is toot and out pops baby.

Yep, time is my good buddy. Time gives me free reign to imagine whole new worlds, make up people who can do anything I will them to do. Time makes me work harder – or not hard at all – depending on the deadline, which in this case is tight. But it doesn’t matter, really. I’m going to cross the street. I’ll get to the other side eventually. I’m no chicken. All I need is a little time.

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3 thoughts on “Perched on the corner of a blank page

  1. Don’t forget that spending time instant messaging a colleague is an important and effective way at finding inspiration too. Or not.

  2. we warm our speculums…and give you fair warning.

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