Monday, August 17, 2015


I compose at the keyboard. It's exciting and keeps the writing fire burning. It doesn't always work, though. Sometimes there's a traffic jam at the intersection of brain and fingers, and I just sit here and stare, vacantly, wondering what comes next.

It's called stream-of-consciousness, or free-writing, and when it's really happening it's like I imagine surfing would be like--riding that wave, playing with it, not really knowing what's coming next.

Then there's the wipeout. End-over-end tumbling, the words don't cooperate, I'd rather play with the cats, Angry Birds is calling. Or just a quick random search on the 'net which goes for hours.

Sometimes it produces something. At those times it's great. Oh, that's not saying that the something won't require editing on a mass scale, but it just feels good when I really get stuff out that I can use. I don't know how the process works (much like the Wizard of Oz in his balloon), it just happens. Sometimes.

It's also a good warm-up for other, tougher tasks ahead of me, like...the editing I need to wrap up on my book.

How about you folks out there? Any free-writers? Do you use this technique to generate something? Or do you map things out? There are plenty of times I wish I could do an outline, follow it beginning to end, with clear ideas of where I'm going. But that's not how it happens for me. I have to spill the batch of Lincoln Logs on the ground, sit there and just start doodling.

And, speaking of doodling, here's a link to my wife's article she wrote recently for "Zen Doodle Workshop" where she describes how to design and make a deck of cards using pen and ink techniques. Click on this link.

“Beware of advice—even this.”
—Carl Sandburg


Keep writing, friends.

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Hi, folks. Tom here. I wish to encourage open, friendly conversation on my blog. I would love to hear from you.

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