The insufficiency of “Just Keep Writing”

Good writers write. Or so goes the common adage. It's the sage advice those with experience pass on to those aspiring. Get busy. Get to work. Put paper to pen. Just write. But I think a more necessary motivation today should be write "right" words. There is no shortage of unfiltered, unedited words available for consumption. I think that's why I've avoided this outlet for expression for the past year. I'm not interested in adding my own incoherencies. Nor should you be. No one wants to be served a cook's trial attempt — with its burnt edges and soft middles. We all want a cook's refined product, the one with the flavors that work well together, where ingredients have been mixed with care and precision. And so it should be when you write. Don't mess around. Have intent. Labor over edits. Give words and stories the care and attention they deserve. Toss aside the covers late at night and untangle the sentences and thoughts spinning in your head. Don't write what feels right but what is right. 

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2 Responses to The insufficiency of “Just Keep Writing”

  1. James says:

    Brilliant words my friend. I remember in undergrad when many of us discovered personal blogging as an outlet for public writing. I know myself, and I expect many other people, would write frequently to create volume and with a goal of creating something that appears profound or insightful. I know I started to write more for the publicity of it with less and less creativity or inspiration, and now to this day write only occasionally. I think that ok though, since if I do write (either personal journaling or public blogging) that my focus is more intentional.
    I love wandering through a bookstore, but I find myself less interested in the multitude of books as my desire for meaningful literature grows. My time is short, and life in this age is fleeting. The words we put in our heads and heart should be of the highest quality, then, if we desire for the highest quality of thought.

    • hoops says:

      Thanks for commenting and for the encouragement, James. Maybe we’re just getting wiser in our older age, learning that life isn’t about how much we absorb but the quality we absorb. Keep sharing the meaningful stuff you find. I’ll read it.