Sunday, October 16, 2011

Write Without Editing

Michael Hyatt had an interesting paragraph in a recent blog post about how editing while creatively writing will drive you crazy. The reasoning is that writing is primarily a right-brain function whereas editing is a left-brain function. If you edit while writing, you are constantly switching between the two hemispheres and can’t get into the proper flow of either one. This slows you down and can be extremely frustrating.

I didn’t know the reason for the frustration when editing while writing, but it’s totally true, at least for me. I’ve been having trouble lately getting into the elusive ‘flow’, and now I know why. That’s totally it! I’ve bogged myself down with trying to write everything perfectly in the first draft and don’t concentrate on the actual story anymore, don't let the story come to me. Before I can edit, though, I have to create something that can be edited. Kind of obvious, but sometimes you can’t see what’s right in front of your nose.

Write down those adverbs and adjectives, those repetitions, those clichés and info dumps, that rambling prose, those absurdities that flow like a sweet chocolate river from mind to fingers. You can beat them off with cursor and backspace later. But first they must be piled high before they can be carved into any kind of shape, just like a sand castle starts out as a simple mound of sand.

So my new motto and mantra is simply: Write. Write write write. Now. 


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