What happens when I write by hand

Today I’m trying an experiment. I’m writing this post by hand (with a pen!) and I don’t know what I”m going to say yet. But I’m going to see what I come up with, and if it’s interesting I’ll turn it into a blog post.

This is a little different to my normal way of writing. Usually I write an outline, try to write a section, get annoyed at not being able to write anything, then invoke the “terrible first draft is okay” rule and give myself permission to write whatever I can come up with. Once I’ve got something down, I’m set. I still spend about half my time fiddling with wording, reordering, restructuring, rewriting, but once I have something down the hard part is over. I know that if I just keep fiddling for a bit, I’ll get a post I’m happy with.

Writing with a pen is different. I usually use this method when I’m journaling, AKA dumping my brain onto paper. There’s no pressure to make grammatical (or logical) sense. I just write my thoughts straight onto paper. Pose questions and explore what comes up. Usually get lost down twisty passages of thought that lead nowhere in particular, but at least I usually see interesting things along the way.

Writing this post is different again. I’m intending it to be read by others, so I’m taking a little more care to make sense and explain things. Compared to how I usually write posts I’m getting a lot written very quickly. Only: I don’t know quite where I’m going.

I like the spontaneous way this post formed itself. It feels funny calling it a post when it’s still pen on paper, but it seems the best way to refer to it. I hope to write again like this in the future and maybe even have something useful come out in the process.

Thanks for reading this little experiment, and enjoy the rest of your long weekend.

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One Response to “What happens when I write by hand”

  1. Anon
    13 April 2009 at 02:50

    Its amazing that when you write things that make no sense, they make all the sense in the word. Well at least to Freud.

    As I blend every semantic type of loose, frivolous condition of the brain in my thoughts, i see that i have not even decided on an outfit of spectrum.

    Semantic is an infrastructure for parser based text analysis in Emacs. LOL!

    Brains are weird. Happy Easter!

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