Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Tipsy Tuesday

I take advantage of as many freebies as I can, especially when it comes to learning more about writing. Some information I hear over and over, such as the following:

1. Put off editing - in other words, don't edit while you write. Work from the unconscious level of your brain, where powerful images and words are created. Do this, and you can shut down the inner editor part of your mind. That way you don't worry about spelling, grammar, finding the exact right word, etc.

Of course, spelling counts, as does good grammar. They support vibrant writing, but they do not create vibrant writing. There are a great many correctly written lifeless sentences. The best writing comes to life first, and later is refined just enough to make it crystal clear. But first you must give it life. Edit once it's all down.

2. Write what you know - Given the chance, what do you talk about endlessly? What drives you to seek out information? What are your passions? When you write what you know, you write with authority. People listen to you because you are one who knows. You are interesting because you are interested.

3. Research - No matter what you know about the subject, there is always more to learn. Make sure you have the latest information available on your subject. Once you write something, at least some of your readers are going to believe you. You owe them accuracy.

Now, there is value in all of this. I absolutely agree with #2 and #3. But...I can't follow #1. I've tried, and it blocks me more than helps to try not to spell correctly and have the correct grammar as I go. I need to find the exact word, though I have (rarely) put in the word that's in my head (the one I know I'm not using correctly or isn't the right one), highlight it and move on. But my writing process very much involves my inner editor along for the entire ride.

And you know what?

That's okay. This is the point I'm trying to make. Whatever information you come across regarding the writing process, you must remember this: No one way is the right way. There is no wrong way. There's only your way. And your way is most likely different than my way.

And that's all right.

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