Writer’s Notebook: Finish or Delete

One of the interesting things about sending out a weekly story is that it’s got me thinking about how I write. One thing I’ve seen is that the best stories I’ve written are very fast. Some of the most successful very-short-stories needed very little editing.

I’ve also noticed that when I struggle with a story it rarely turns out well. There are pieces I’ve been tinkering with for years that haven’t quite worked. I’ve got notes for ideas that go back 30 years and have yet to result in anything.

One of the problems with hoarding is that you start to lose track of what’s valuable. By keeping everything, you distract from the things you should focus on. I have over 60,000 words of notes in 180 documents for the South Downs Way project but progress has slowed to a crawl.

A few years back, someone invented a word processor called The Most Dangerous Writing App that deletes your work in progress if you stop writing. Apparently it’s very good for curing writer’s block.

I’m considering doing something similar with all my writing notes. That each time I work on a document, I should make swift and significant progress; and if I don’t I will delete the document.

If nothing else, it will stop me wasting my time playing with ancient ideas, and free up more energy to focus on new things.

If you want to follow what I'm up to, sign up to my mailing list

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *