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How I Write

  • April 11, 2014

Star In My Notebook

I have already written quotes about why I write, what inspires me to write as well as suggestions and prompts, and I have even given advice to aspiring writers everywhere.  This is how I write.

When I started taking my writing seriously, as a possible career path, the year was 1998 and I was a high school senior.  I have always had an obsession with efficiency, that is, in simple terms, obtaining the desired result or effect with the least possible use of resources, time, or effort.  Ironically, while I make every effort possible to make things in my life as efficient as possible, as it relates to my writing, I use perhaps the most inefficient and most antiquated means possible; a Moleskine notebook and a pen with blue ink.  The lack of efficiency in paper based writing results in quality writing.

As writers, we must find the writing method that works the best for ourselves, even if said method or methods seem lost in antiquity or inefficiency.  The true mark of a good writer is someone who not only knows what words to write, but most importantly, why those words need to be written and collectively, what the meaning is behind those books filled with written pages.

A disturbing trend I have noticed in modern times is writers taking a simple premise, and filling the pages with unnecessary fluff and nonsensical points with arbitrary and unnecessary attention to insignificant details.  This is a common practice that is often taught by professors to undergraduate college students whom are assigned writing papers with minimum word counts.  I refer to this practice of watering-down writing pieces as souping.

Souping is the archaic practice of adding insignificant and or pathetically useless words and sentences to ones writing whose sole purpose is increasing its length.  A lot of writers do this; resist the urge and or belief that in order for a writing piece to be interesting, intellectually stimulating, or impressive that it must be lengthy.

Aside I recently had a strange dream about my father.  After his passing in 2013, I have had recurring dreams where he tries to tell me things that he planned on telling me, “one day”, but didn’t get the chance to.  In my dream, my father tried to show me old computer files filled with writing, and other important files which he thought might be an interesting addition to my blog.  Since then I have been searching through hundreds of computer disks trying to recover anything, but as of yet, I haven’t found anything at all.  It seems data saved on computer disks prior to the 1990’s rarely survives long-term.

Colophon  This post was originally inspired, if not based upon this blog post and my pretentious comment.  The header image originally appeared here, A Few Of My Favorite Photos.  As for writing asides, read this one, it is brilliant.

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4 Comments on How I Write

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  • Tracey Tobin says:
    April 13, 2014 at 8:24 AM

    There are lots of fancy toys and software out there these days, but I definitely agree that each individual writer should find the method (new-age or old-school) that works the best for them. Personally I love writing in lined notebooks…it just feels right somehow…but I also write very slowly by hand and would never get anything accomplished if that was the only way I wrote, so I try to save that for when I don’t have access to a computer.

    As for your dreams, I have to say that that would be driving me insane. Good luck on your search, and let us know if you find anything. 🙂

    Reply

    • Thomas says:
      April 13, 2014 at 11:22 AM

      The dreams ARE driving me crazy. I wish I knew what my father wanted to tell me, and I will never understand why he waited so long just to tell me. Perhaps I may never know.

      Reply

      • Tracey Tobin says:
        April 13, 2014 at 8:23 PM

        Okay, see, no, because then it’ll drive ME crazy too! lol

        Aren’t dreams just a huge pain sometimes? I often think that my brain is trying to tell me things, but I’m just not equipped to figure out WHAT. >.<

        Reply

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