There are multiple purposes for this blog. First, I'd like to share with you how mental illness can interfere with or enhance the writer's life. Second, I want to explore a more disciplined approach to the writing life. This blog will hold me accountable as I navigate story throughout my battle with mental illness.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Writing Begets Writing

A simple yet powerful quote.  The good news is that it really works. I was doing some freewriting when suddenly this “eureka” moment seized me. The writing felt like water gushing from a spring. I thought, “why not a post about how writing begets writing?”

You may be able to speed this moment along by switching up your routine, too. You could be writing a post and then you get another “ah ha” moment and the solution to your plot hole occurs. Or you feel a need for catharsis, and begin journaling. I believe you don’t have to resort to waiting for the “ah ha” moment either. Just simply “mixing it up” or employing several types of writing (essay, blog post, journaling, fiction) can inform your subconscious of the unmet needs that the other types of writing can gift you with. While you are toiling away at one piece of writing, your subconscious is also working. You may never know when that moment will come, so you have to be prepared to wrangle that thought before it slips away.

And it doesn’t matter if you think the writing sucks. Just do it. You will get better over time. But the only way is to apply the BIC principle (butt-in-chair) and start banging out or scribbling down the words. As Dennis Palumbo says in this article, “Every hour you spend writing is an hour NOT spent fretting about your writing. Every day you produce pages is a day you DIDN'T spend sitting at a coffee shop, bitching about not producing any pages.”

I’ll finalize with this quote from Sharon O’Brien, “Writing became such a process of discovery that I couldn’t wait to get to work in the morning: I wanted to find out what I was going to say.” - The International Thesaurus of Quotations


  1. This is an excellent post! And this is something that has worked for me too! Waiting for inspiration is fruitless. Actually starting to type brings in a flow and many times new ideas too!
    All the best for the blogathon!

  2. Thanks Pavithra. I hope to get more disciplined and use this more often. Good luck to you!

  3. I think you're absolutely right, and I agree with Pavithra as well - you can't just wait for inspiration! Sometimes you have to just work it out. It's the same with drawing and sewing for me, once I get started a wave of creativity comes and I just hate when I have to stop. I'm looking at this blogathon in the same way. If I write something every day then I hope writing will come easier for me altogether.

  4. You are on the right track, writing and more writing will definitely help alleviate the fretting about writing and before you know you have tons of material. :-)

  5. @georgia-I'll probably do it day by day also, although I'd like to stay ahead by a few days.

    @Anyes-Agree whole-heartedly