Writer’s Block ~ Designer’s Block
By Morgan O.Neill
Lately, I have had writers block. It has been hard. The words just have not flowed. Not that they ever flowed with a fluency that made much sense to those who take time to read them, but at least I could get something reasonably coherent out. But not right now. I feel somewhat out-of-sorts. And I wonder why sometimes it seems easy and sometimes it requires umpteen drafts and sometimes it is just impossible to begin at all.
I have heard all sorts of stories about writing disciplines. They run the gamut from no discipline at all to writing every day. Write a thousand words no matter what, even if you are lying in bed with influenza. Take a break, put the pen down, travel somewhere and forget about the idea entirely. One sage counsels aspiring authors to find a comfortable place, a familiar nook. Another advises go to someplace new that will inspire you. Write in a quiet place alone. Write in a crowded place where the din of voices acts as white noise creating a cocoon around you.
I don’t know how journalists do it. I need 800 words on City Hall by 3 p.m. every day their editor roars! And it better be good! Clark Kent can do that. Not me. Granted he has an advantage given that he can wait until the last minute and do the two-finger two-step across the keyboard at blinding speed. But I digress. And then there are the tome torturers. The ones that can sustain a single storyline for so long that their words are measured in pounds like Dostoyevsky and Tolstoy; must be the Russian DNA or endless winters or vodka. Okay they write great short stories too, but I had to counterpoint the first idea in this paragraph so give me a break.
I do know that my personal experiences often unleash a flood of ideas to write about and it seems easy to understand how one’s own life can stimulate those ideas, but, even then, writing coherently about those experiences can be challenging. A mentor of mine, a terrific writer, once said to me, “Just write! You will be amazed by what happens, even if what you think you are writing is trash. Write, but don’t publish. Save the draft. Leave it alone for a day, a week, even a year. One day you will come back to it and voila the dam will break.” He obviously doesn’t have to write in order to feed himself.
So, by now you’re asking what the heck does this blog have to do with Lingerie? Obviously you have not been listening. I told you I have writer’s block! So, I decided to write about the idea that I have no idea. And voila! Suddenly I know what it is that I wanted to say that was buried beneath the first 400 plus words of this blog B.S.
How come so much lingerie looks alike? I mean how come you can look at dozens of bras from dozens of designers and except for the color they all look the same. Is it because designers suffer from a sort of designer block too? Is it because they just cannot find that spark of creativity to create something new? Is it because every conceivable material, engineering and manufacturing technique has already been developed? I expect that anyone facing this creative process can be faced by this dilemma.
Yes, I know that the size and fit is critical, particularly for bras, but lay that aspect aside for the moment and consider the idea. Designing new product and delivering it on the seasonal fashion rhythm year in and year out is unbelievably challenging. Sure, most will agree that there will always be new materials. Some engineering Einstein will conceive of a new way to improve comfort. Manufacturers worth their salt will always pursue continuous improvement. But for great designers the creative process is wholly unique. What inspires them? How do they circumvent designer’s block? How do they do what they do?