?窆當我有腦閉塞時,我會盯住電腦熒幕多個小時,一個字也寫不出來。
又中又英——
作家最怕 writer's block
2011-02-17
The one thing writers dread most is writer's block. When I am affected by writer's block I can stare at a computer screen for an hour or more without writing a single word. Sometimes the only way I can shake off my writer's block is to take a hot shower or lie in bed for a while. To dread something is to be very afraid of something. Writer's block is when a writer is unable to write anything no matter how hard he tries. It is as if something is blocking the writer's mind, making it impossible for him to think of anything to write about. To shake off something has many meanings but in this case it means to get rid of something.

        S
ome novelists are so badly affected by writer's block that they cannot write for months. Even students writing school essays can sometimes have writer's block. But I don't think you can fool your teacher by saying writer's block prevented you from doing your homework! I can also shake off my writer's block if something happens that lifts my spirits. To lift your spirits means to make you happy or to put you in a better mood.

        My spirits were lifted recently by a hand-written letter I received from a middle-aged reader. His kind words about my columns elated me. This means it made me proud and very happy. He said he learnt a lot from my columns and asked me to correct the mistakes in his letter. His letter did contain grammatical errors but that is not important. What is important is that his letter also contained some of the things I taught in past columns. It is very brave of him to actually use what he has learnt. Hats off to him. As I've explained before, this means to praise or congratulate someone. He has learnt the lesson that you must use it or lose it.

        * * *

        作家最恐懼(dread)腦閉塞(writer's block)。當我有腦閉塞(writer's block),我會盯住電腦的熒幕一小時,甚至更久,一個字也寫不出來。有時,我唯一可做,甩掉(shake off)腦閉塞,就是淋一個熱水浴,或躺在H上一會兒。「Dread」指很害怕某東西。「Writer's block」指作家無論有多努力,也寫不出東西,就像腦筋打結,喪失所有寫作靈感。「Shake off」有很多意思,這婺悝@擺脫某東西。

        有些小說家患上嚴重腦閉塞(writer's block),數個月也寫不出字,學生寫文章有時也有腦閉塞,但我不認為你可以對老師說謊,腦閉塞害你交不了功課。若有事情叫我振奮(lifts my spirits),我也可擺脫腦閉塞。「Lift your spirits」指叫你開心,提升情緒。

        最近我收到一封中年讀者的手寫信,大為振奮(spirits were lifted)。他的讚美說話鼓舞(elated)我,那意思是,他的話叫我自豪、非常快樂。他說從專欄學到很多英文,要求我糾正他信中的錯處。雖然他的信有文法錯誤,但那不重要,重要的是,他在信中用上我之前教的英文。他活學活用,十分勇敢,我向他致敬(hats off)。正如我之前解釋,那意指讚揚、恭賀某人。他學到「you must use it or lose it」,你必須使用它,否則會失去它。

        中譯: 蕭瑩盈

        Michael Chugani 褚簡寧

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