Sunday, November 10, 2013

Why Bother Writing?

Thoughts are vague. No matter how clear a thought is to you, it would not be fully formed. That is, till you decide to write it down.
When you write down anything, you assign an (imaginary) audience to it. And you start explaining your idea. Any explanation has to go down logically. Every digression will have to be thought through to its completion. But this is lacking in "just thinking" about it. Your brain deceives you into believing that everything is logical and that branches of thoughts are self explanatory or irrelevant, or somehow not any which require that it be pursued.

Thinking gives a false impression of completeness. Writing makes a thought concrete.

It is like a construction. You can plan everything down to its last detail. But it is only when you start building it that you realize which structures are vulnerable and what modifications are necessary in order to make the building stronger.

And that makes writing difficult.

So difficult that when people actually sit down and try to write, they give up, and worse, they think of writing as a futile exercise because they have "already thought everything about it".

You get my point. If you are thinking that you have thought everything about something, you should be able to write about it without any difficulty. If you find writing about it even slightly difficult, it means that you have missed out some critical piece of thought in your mind tree. It's only when you're forced to write, that it becomes complete.

So, write.


PS: Writing this made me consider another related process - "talking". Wouldn't talking also force us to solidify thoughts? I think the answer is "Yes, but...".
Pros of writing:
  • A written document can be read by anyone, any time.
Cons of talking:
  • Conversation gets very messy if you try to go back and delete a wrong word from one of your previous statements, and come back and continue the sentence and then change another word in the previous statement, and so on. There is absolutely no way to delete a paragraph.
Okay, from the above point onwards, I'm considering only digital writing. And I seriously don't think anyone will be writing with pen on paper any more.

Perceived pros of talking that is levelled by internet:
  • In a conversation with an interested soul, you might get help from the conversational partner to finish your thought. Blogs with commenting system set up lets anyone else forge a new direction from your idea.

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