Saturday, December 17, 2011

Sketch Writing, for fun and profit


Sketch Writing
4 28 2011

So back in the day, I wrote stories. Meaningless, stream of consciousness stories that amused many, and made sense to few. They weren't supposed to make sense, they were supposed to exist.

Back up a bit from now, move forward a lot from them. To a month or so ago. (Roughly 4-1-11, April 1, 2011.)

Ok, first, back up a bit more.
Mentally anyway. At some point, I realized the why of my writing. I write for three reasons.  These are the best and most functional reasons for anyone to write.
1) I can
(it works, I feel functional in doing so, I have the means to do so.)
2) I'm good at it
(not arrogant at all...)
3) I want to/I enjoy it

There may be more reasons, but those three are plenty.  If money is the reason, go pick up writer's market and skim through what people get paid for writing, and that is only the people who do get paid.  If a person can content themselves with at least one of those three, he or she can write at length.

Ok, lets go back (or forward, I forget when we had gone to,) to early April 2011. I realized the last reason is most meaningful to me.  “I want to.”  I love to write.  I write because if I don't write, I wither into a little raisin-like husk.  (It could happen!)  However, the pain of not writing could never spur me to write.
I write because I literally love it.  I enjoy the act of writing, of sitting and thinking out words, to read what I have written, and to think about what I will right.  These things help me move get up and go write more than anything else.
Despite all that, starting and stopping are the two hardest things I ever do.  I sometimes find that it's 5 am and I need to work at 10 and I'm still pounding away, wearing out my expensive ergonomic keyboard at 70 wpm.  I sometimes find that I've plotted hours to go write, and sit at home doing nothing meaningful instead, maybe listening to music and looking at facebook.

As Luther would say,
“What does this mean?”
The only reason I can write is because I want to.  I wonder how many other people can force themselves to write just because they "need to" or something equally obscure.  Writing is my favorite form of entertainment.  Hopefully other writers enjoy their work as much as I do.
Writing is the end, with no relevant means. Who needs a means? Forget the means. Don't get hung up on it.  You're always going on about this means stuff.  Forget cause and effect.
Don't get caught up in the “doing something” ideal of writing. Sure, you might get published, but that's a side effect, like eating ambrosia and discovering that its cured your athletes foot, along with your leukemia. (Or maybe not, the Greek gods were messed up.)

Best yet, writing doesn't go away (unless you don't back up your material!  And you should!)  Practice makes a writer better, no doubt, and that value is within the writer, but the words themselves might have value to someone some day.  Like any art, your words are never worthless.
Writing, even with little purpose or goal, is sketching.  It is the hours of work a person does to be able to make a single toe look good. It's the hundreds of hours a sculptor puts into making abs look nothing like real abs and all the better for it.

Sketch writing. Because you want to. Make it happen.

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