Tuesday, November 18, 2008

3 reasons for writing it

I was surprised when I looked at the "last posted" and saw that it had been more than a week. It has been a very fast ten days and I have done a lot of work - some of it in writing.

We all think that writing something down is slower than just working it through in our heads or in conversation. Most of the time we are wrong. Writing forces us to make choices that we do not have to make in our heads. It feels so slow because it takes thoughts in motion and holds them in one place. This is the first benefit of writing: to write we have to make choices and stick to them.

Some of the choices we make in writing surprise us. We look at the words on the page or the screen and discover something that we did not know we were thinking. If we had not formed the intention to write, we would still not know. That's the second benefit of writing: we pull ideas from unconscious process into conscious awareness.

It is hard to change minds, but it is easy to change words. When we write something, we can play with it merely by adding, subtracting or modifying words. Words are not even a dime a dozen - they're free. Nothing could be easier than to change a word or two - it does not require strength or imagination or money or time. Try it. Add a word. Take one away. Now notice what a difference a word or two makes. That's the third benefit of writing: it makes change easy.

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