On the process

One of the challenges this summer—and the challenge, really, that any writer faces—is getting the writing process started. That’s 99 percent of the obstacle. Once you get started it’s easy to continue writing, but one of the worst feelings in the world is staring at the blank page with a vague feeling of failure. I’ve gone through many days where I felt my sense of self-worth shrivel because I meant to write something and instead accomplished a lot of fishing, reading, or scrolling through inane pictures.

There are a number of things that I’ve found that help with this. The most boring way is to make an outline, but for me that takes all the joy out of the written expression of thought. Organization is necessary to a point, but in excess quantities it kills originality. Still, it’s important to get the major topics down on the paper or to map out the general narrative flow.

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