It’s early morning. I have been sat looking at a blank page for over an hour wondering what to write. My fingers hesitantly touch the keyboard hoping inspiration will come. You, dear reader, will be the judge of the quality of this article when you reach the end and ask yourself “Was that worth my time?” Perhaps you are in need of a little bit of inspiration yourself.
The freelance writer is often faced with a blank page. Occasionally the brief you have been given is wide. You have been given a topic but how you go about writing content for that is up to you. You may have written for the topic before and are now struggling to find a new angle into it. A new way to be creative. You want something to inspire your ‘infertile’ mind and in turn be the inspiration for others. There are no easy answers. The blank page stares back at you almost daring you to go away, to turn off your computer. It mocks your inability, your hesitation, your complacency. The blank page sears into your mind and dazzles you with its emptiness, as empty as your mind. You are tempted to give in. You consider having another cup of tea. You wonder whether it is worth giving up for the day and trying again tomorrow. Maybe you just need a little bit more sleep. Maybe the blank page has the victory today.
My advice. Start writing. Write anything. I did and look where I am now, here at this very sentence you are reading. I thwarted the blank page and marked it with words. I wasn’t sure where the words would take me but inspiration won over and the blank page has been defeated. A theme has developed. Despite the blank page’s efforts to thwart me a twist occurred. The blank page became my theme. Even now I can sense the blank page cowering in a corner as the words flow. It makes one last move to stop me reaching a conclusion. I fight back because I keep writing. I retaliate with words despite the blank page telling me that I have nothing useful to say, that my words are meaningless, that I am the only one who suffers from indecision and an empty head. As I head for the conclusion the blank page hisses at me. I keep writing hoping that the reader will understand what I am trying to say as his or her own blank page glows (or glowers) in the corner.
What I am saying to you, in conclusion, is write! Write until the blank page is defeated. Forget editing, forget making sense, just write! When that blank page has been filled, you will have some satisfaction that you have done something. It may be nothing very much or it may be the best thing you have ever written. You will never know until your fingers actually start hitting the keys, each one a blow to the blank page’s stubborn glare. You will be victorious and your day will not be wasted. Fight on freelance writer, fight on, and defeat each blank page you come across with vigor and resilience.
Goodbye blank page. I can no longer see you.