Friday, October 8, 2010

Sports Writer's Block

Remember the essay tests or the SATs in high school? Do you even remember the dreaded essay booklets in college? Of course, you would start taking the test, and then you would get that one little essay question that you would have no idea how to write out no matter how well you knew the material. Don't lie, it happens to everyone. And I'll be the first to say that it's the most godawful thing to happen. In stating this, I'm starting to get my groove into sports writing. However, I'm still getting that little tumbleweed in my head once in a while when I want to write a really "beefy" topic. In short, here is one question I would love to ask: regardless of how much information that reporters and analysts receive after so many years, do they still get the massive writers block of old?

I'll admit, when I start thinking and drafting a topic that I would really like to write about, it can be incredibly hard to scribble complete thoughts at times. I'll be wide awake, full of food and other energy, and my brain will just refuse to work with me. It's very irritating, and I know that there are beat reporters out there that cannot afford to have that happen once in a while. It's even worse when you're a columnist and you're trying to either poke fun or "sport" an opinion about a topic. Believe me, it wasn't easy thinking about how I could make jokes about the Manning vs. Manning game while still stating facts and figures. That had to cook in my head for a couple of days.


If you've dug into this blog far enough, you have probably seen the entry that I was going to discontinue the blog due to other conflicts (mainly school) and then I wound up bringing it back a few weeks later. Schooling full-time and working part-time isn't exactly the easiest thing when you're trying to make spare time to write, and I often try my best to make the most of free time at the end of the day. Unfortunately, there are those times when you have so much free time inbetween and you can't capitalize on it. It's almost like how really bad baseball teams can't get that clutch hit with RISP and you wind up leaving at least 15-20 guys on base by the end of the game. Yes, the steam comes out of my ears. I even bought myself a notebook so when I get that spark of brilliance wherever I am I can jot it down and save it for later. Isn't that what comedians and songwriters do anyway?

I never thought I would get this far into writing, because as I state in the About Me section, I was never the reader/writer. Now that my feet have been submersed, as it were, I want to stay in as far as possible and make sure that I can think of something effective and enjoyable on the fly. I've found stuff like this to be very therapeutic, but being a writer isn't considered a "career" on my end yet, so why do I stress out about it? To prepare? To impress? To make others happy? I have no idea. I need to see a psychiatrist or something.

But reverting back to my question in the beginning, how on Earth do sports analysts and beat columnists keep going? I understand that the job is stressful, but at times there are just things that the brain cannot do at all. Am I really in over my head, or am I just missing something that will come in handy once I truly begin the journey?



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