A Thorough Process

How do you maintain the balance between passion and precision in your writing? For me it takes a four-step process. Having a process I can follow, something to rely on when the words refuse to come, when my mind feels numb and sluggish, is essential. The specific process you choose will, of course, be individual to you, as long as it works.

My Process:

  1. Write longhand. I love the feeling of the pen tip on the paper, watching the physical marks appear on the page. I love how fast I write this way, thoughts pouring out in a river across the page. It’s a metaphor, sure, but that image deepens my process.
  2. Type it in. I’ll naturally correct, add, and delete as I go, crafting and shaping the raw words and ideas from Step 1.
  3. Print and edit. Now, from a reader’s point of view, I pore over my manuscript, marking it up, filling in any missing details, crossing out extraneous verbiage and dead end thoughts, sharpening each dull word.
  4. Type it in again. Now the passion of the process starts bubbling again as I rediscover and heighten my original intentions while intermixing the ideas I generated as I edited, uncovering new perspectives and honing my expression.

This process may go through many cycles depending on the project’s scope. The writing becomes an internal dialogue, a series of logical leaps and bursts of passionate insight.

How about you? What’s your process?

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