Reblog: “One step backward…”

What would help a writer churn out more words within a certain amount of time is … well, time. Set a timer for 10, 15 or 20 minutes and write until the timer goes off. I’ve taken writing workshops where we’re given prompts and had to write for a set amount of time. The challenge is to do this without deleting or editing anything — which was what an instructor of mine recommended. Write in accordance with your stream of consiousness no matter how off the rails it may be; just don’t stop. The whole point of penning the first draft is to get something on paper. That’s why the editing and revision stages come after. As Ernest Hemingway once said, “The first draft of anything is s***.” And that’s okay.

The Write Push

…but two steps forward. Managed almost 800 words yesterday, but deleted 300 of them this morning. I don’t know where I was going, but it wasn’t on a path that I feel like staying on. 

I did read a couple useful things yesterday, though. One was a writer on reddit talking about letting her inner teenager get free. Something about the image resonated with me. The other was a line from the book Write. Publish. Repeat. I’m basically skimming the book–the authors take an awful lot of words to say even the simplest thing–but I highlighted this paragraph:

Writing fast helps you to capture your most natural voice. Done well, it also leaves you with copy that’s easy to edit. Manipulating your thoughts into elegant prose takes a long time. Capturing unedited thoughts as they fly through your mind, however, can yield clean, concise copy with clarity and voice…

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