Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Writing is hard work

I've spent the last two days training managers to write better emails. I'm always impressed by how deeply people want to express themselves effectively and how frustrated they get by the difficulty of writing. Writing means squeezing complicated, changing experience into one word at a time. It's like turning sand into diamonds. It takes time and it takes pressure.

When I was quite young, I was surprised that people found it so hard to be clear and correct. Now that I have had a few years to experience a wider range of perceptions and priorities, I am surprised that writing works as well as it does as often as it does. Just a few words open doors to new connections and they open windows on whole new perspectives. I have always been grateful for the experiences I was given through literature. Now I am also humbled by how often we mangle language and yet still get what we need through it.

Imagine being slow and limited and only able to do one thing at a time. Imagine that was enough to change the way people thought and behaved.

Kinda gives you hope, doesn't it?

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