It just sits there staring at you, so empty and waiting for you to write something intelligent on it...
Empty notebooks are like this too. I would love to invest in a load of Moleskines from Amazon as they are so cheap; I love those pictures of piles of brand new Moleskines on flikr. But if I bought some, they would sit there in a pile on my desk, looking at me. If I have trouble putting something intelligent on a single piece of cheap paper, I find it really hard to start writing in an expensive notebook!! I have loads of empty notebooks in my room that need a purpose. Not just me scribbling in them, but a proper purpose. I have started things in notebooks before- novels etc, but never finished them, so I have to chop those pages out in order to be able to reuse the notebook and it looks very ugly. So, I resist temptation to buy a load of pretty notebooks without having a designated purpose for them already.
It's the fact that I've GOT to write something intelligent!! And the blank paper symbolises this!!
Most importantly, essays. I sit down at my desk, put some paper in front on me, pick up a pen, and then... The damned paper just stares at me. It sends me a silent message in a mocking voice, saying "You have to write an excellent essay on me!!" and this haunts me! My super-ego suddenly says "Ooh, it would be great to watch TV right now!" And my ego usually agrees. Bad ego! Half an hour later, that piece of paper is still blank!
So how can I fix this? I found out something while I was sitting in an exam at the end of May... just write SOMETHING, even if it's not the thing you are supposed to write! Your name, the date, the title. Suddenly, Mr Paper isn't so blank any more!! You have achieved the momentous act of writing something!! Even though it's not that fateful essay you are supposed to be writing, you have done something, you are 0.01% finished!! I don't know if it is the act of putting pen to paper, or writing out the title etc of the work you are supposed to be doing, or the fact that you have turned your brain on, but it works! Suddenly, my writer's block in my exam stopped and I was able to start writing!!
If writing the title doesn't work, write down some keywords, bullet points or a spider diagram! Don't think about it like work... just sit back and start writing! Don't try to force things out of your brain, just let the words flow from your head down your arm and through the pen onto the paper! All of a sudden you have done some great work and you will feel a sense of accomplishment, and the paper will be your b*tch, not you its!