Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College


Deep within the recesses of his basement dwelling, the creature flourishes in the near absence of light…cast away from civilization, the caffeinated beast labors obsessively over his plans to conquer…his seminar paper?

Well, it goes something like that. Despite the almost Poe-ian tone, this pretty much captures my writing process. Before I ever type a single word, I sever all human contact. Once contained in a windowless cubicle, I get out everything I need to write the paper at that moment--any novel, prompt, secondary sources, and the like--limiting the extent of my distractions.

These steps help shut my mind off—the cubicle walls narrow my mind’s energy. It is as if I enter a post-apocalyptic world absent of modern conveniences and distractions…but where I still have to have my paper due by 4:30PM on Wednesday.

The more I think about it, the more masochistic it seems: the solitary-confinement-esque work space; the insufferable fluorescents accompanying my almost psychiatric detachment from human contact—all make me want to get my work done and get the hell out. I’m sure Freud would have something to say about it, but let’s not ask. 

  • matt girolami