Wednesday, January 12, 2011

My Process

I write ten pages a day, each day, every day, come hell or high water. I started in August, 2008, and since then I’ve written ten pages a day, long hand, in a composition book, day in, day out, 300 pages a month, 3650 pages a year.

It is really good practice. But there’s also a downside.

I emotionally invest in every world I write. Not much, just the scantest, tiniest amount. But as the pages stack up, eventually the investment stacks up, and I’ve realized that the sheer weight of all that effort renders me paralyzed. I have so many ideas, and each one is like a little promise made to my subconscious and it’s all too goddamn much. And so they sit, growing stale on a shelf full of books. The books are too charged with meaning for me to ever really look through them, so instead of generating money-making projects, they gather dust. Enough is enough.

I read a quote in a productivity book that really inspired me: Don’t save creative thinking, save the structures that creative thinking generates. So I’ve started this blog. It’s an idea garden, my forty acres and a mule. It’s a place to shape and cultivate the various, scattered scrawled ideas and enshrine them in actual, readable pieces. I like the garden metaphor, because it encapsulates what writing is: a field of bullshit that, when carefully
cultivated, produces new structures of astounding design and beauty.

I hope to use this to transform my scattered, random thinking into something that’s dynamic, fluid and searchable, a system to generate ideas that are elegant, sophisticated, and pray god, useful. I'll also stud this blog with some articles on the craft of writing, in the hopes of appealing to the broad segment of the online audience that isn't, y'know, me.

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