Overcoming Writer’s Block

Writer’s block is a thing… it is a completely real thing that is not made up by writers (who for the most part do make up fiction). It occurs when every inch of creativity has seeped out of your body, or when there is a confusing statistical result which your brain can not wrap its neurons around, or when you have a complete mental blank on a word that you swear you have used so many times it is in the ‘most used’ section of your vocabulary. It can and will happen to anyone who writes anything (no matter the genre). So here are my ten tips for getting through your writer’s block. 1) Have a trusty notebook- For a reason we may never understand, that sentence you have been stuck on since lunch time will magically structure itself just before you drift off to sleep, or as you are stopped in the car at the traffic lights. It is therefore essential that you keep a notebook with you at all times so you can quickly jot down the magic before it disappears again. Obviously if you are driving please pull off of the road before you write it down- safety first! You could also use the notepad on your phone if you are more tech savvy! 2) Shower- I am not sure why but so many of my best ideas have occurred when I am in the shower. I was […]

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What is a PhD?

“Is a PhD one year?” “So you will be a doctor?” “But not a medicine doctor?” “A P h What?” These are all questions I have been asked since I applied for a PhD at the end of last year. I do not blame people for not knowing what a PhD is, to be truthful I knew very little about it until I started one myself, and I definitely did not know anything about a PhD before I started my undergraduate course. Firstly what does a PhD stand for? Doctor of Philosophy (not Doctor of Psychology like most of us psych students thought- we sometimes think the world revolves around us). So anybody who is completing a PhD is studying a Doctorate of Philosophy, however depending on their research field will specialise in a specific area. Such as, I am completing a PhD in conservation psychology. What is the degree? Basically, a PhD is a postgraduate course which takes at least three years to complete. PhD students conduct their own research (under the supervision of expert academics) which is original and contributes knowledge. This will generally involve producing a thesis (around 80,000 words) which includes writing introductory chapters, collecting data (eg. surveying people, analysing specimen in laboratories or testing new technology), writing up the results and then discussing what the results mean (this is a very basic description!). People completing a PhD in fields such as literacy or art may […]

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Concentration playlist

What is the first thing many of us do when we sit down to write a piece of work? Put on a playlist of course! When the piece of work you are tackling needs your concentration you require just the right playlist to not take away your attention but also to not put you to sleep. So I have come up with a short playlist of some mellow songs to help you breeze through that next piece of work! It is the perfect length of time (approximately half an hour) to have a solid writing session and then when the playlist is over reward yourself with a short break and go for a walk, or check Instagram or come back on dr.ofwhat ! Go put on the kettle, untangle your headphones and get ready to write! Whole Wide World- Bahamas This song will make you want to go and get on a plane to Tahiti… wait there are sharks, dolphins and wifi in Tahiti right? Webjet here I come! Bloom- The Paper Kites Do you want to feel like you are sleeping in a field of flowers surrounded by butterflies? I am assuming yes? So listen up! All your favourite bands- Dawes “may all your favourite bands stay together” – I will forever wish this upon all of you Romeo & Juliet- Dire straights For me this song reminds me of my beautiful sister because it is her favourite song, for you […]

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Wednesday Word of the Week

Wednesday word of the Week I thought it would be beneficial to have a ‘Wednesday word of the week’ each week as I know I always struggle to find that synonym that is just right for what you are trying to say. We can all try to use each Wednesday word of the week in any piece of writing they are currently working on. This weeks (8th of June) Wednesday word of the Week: Cognisant (or cognizant): Having knowledge or awareness. #wedwordweek

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Coffee Cactus

A wise person once told me- “there is no productivity without coffee”- okay so I whisper this to myself every morning as I drink my one (or two) cups of coffee whilst answering emails (but I stand by the wise title!). If you are a person who survives without a morning caffeine kick then kudos to you! When I finished my […]

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Pinboard Worthy Quotes

To optimise your productivity, I strongly believe having a bright pinboard full of inspiration in your work space is key. An important addition to any  pinboard is an inspirational quote for you to look at instead of you computer screen  (irony at its finest). Here are some quotes (including some originals!) that you should print out and pin up immediately! 1) “& promise me you will shine in any universe you are orbiting in.” 2) “Your profession is not what brings home the weekly pay check, your profession is what you’re put here on earth to do, with such passion and such intensity that is becomes spiritual in calling” – Vincent Van Gogh 3) “It always seems impossible until it’s done”– Nelson Mandela 4) “There is plenty of sunshine between sunrise and sunset” 5) “I began to realise how important it was to be an enthusiast in life. If you are interested in something, no matter what it is, go at it full speed. Embrace it with both arms, hug it, love it and above all became passionate about it. Lukewarm is no good.”– Roald Dahl 6) “Go to bed every night being grateful for something that happened in that day and excited for something happening the next day.” 7) “I’m still learning”– Michelangelo What is your favourite inspirational quote? #pinboardinspo

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Why a PhD?

If you asked me two years ago where I would be now, I never in a million years would have said sitting at my desk every week day reading journal articles and writing a proposal for an 80,000 word thesis. But guess what, that is exactly what I am doing- and even crazier I enjoy it! Let me get back on track… to answer why a PhD I have to go back to the source of why psychology. When I was choosing my year 11 subjects at school I had one spot to fill and it was actually my wonderful mum that suggested psychology. I absolutely loved psychology in both year 11 and year 12 and dreamed of being a clinical psychologist (at this point that was all I thought psychology was). So, when I was offered my first choice at university- a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) that was what I went off to study. The question “what do you want to be when you’re older” sends shivers down that spine of many high school students. However, for me it was worse- all through my last year of high school I knew what I wanted to do. It was not until I started studying psychology that doubt arose and I genuinely could no longer answer that question. Did I want to be a psychologist? A teacher? A journalist? All these options crossed my mind, so much so that I was going […]

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