One step at a time

One step at a time, one paragraph. One page, one chapter. That is how we write anything – novels, memoir – and there are no short cuts, really, in the process of producing reams of writing.

So the best thing I can recommend if you are in a hurry is to learn to type properly. It always astonishes me that in this age of technology, that people still type with one finger…Must drive them nuts! You cannot write anything well if you are typing one finger at a time.

I can only give some indication of knowing what to do, by sharing with you what I would do. So, I would, at this juncture in the creative process, ask for the words to come into my fingers, pay attention and write whatever comes, without thinking too much about syntax. That is what I do, when life works for me.

I don’t work all that well with pressure, with any sense that I have to work at this or else…! I hate the sense of threat that comes from setting a routine and then failing to meet self-imposed deadlines. So I write best when I know I’m going to enjoy it, or even, when I feel as if the words are flying through me, without conscious thought. It’s hardly deliberate, it’s more a case of an itch that has to be scratched. I can write direct onto computer, or longhand with a pen.

Each of us has different strengths that we bring to writing, and each of us has to have the courage and honesty to face up to our techniques and consciously devise a method that works. It doesn’t matter if other people call it ‘haphazard’ or ‘casual’ – if it works for you, believe in it.

And believe in your writing.

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