succumbing to peer pressure

Friday, September 18, 2009

These are the moments when I love my Type A personality

I don't know what it's like for y'all, but I have a rather binary relationship with writing. Either I got it* or I don't. After a gazillion years of school, I honestly still haven't figured out how to flip the writing switch, I just have to hang out and be ready and wait for it to happen. When the switch is on, the writing flows and the editing comes naturally and it's not even remotely painful. When the switch is off, it's like pulling teeth, and it's essentially a lost cause, since everything I type will be shit and will have to be re-written anyway.

Now, this is a gamble, because if you're hanging out, waiting for the muse to strike you, and a deadline is looming, well, you may be in trouble. Which is why I work on things so far in advance. I love the luxury of waiting for my writing moods.

I'm working on a report for work, and the thing is, as my old roommate used to say, a shitty first draft. Now, this is a necessary stage of practically all writing (in my experience), but it's a particularly painful stage. I've been avoiding this report for days - walking around with it in my bag, setting it out on my desk, but not actually working on it. Every time I read it my brain would go, "My eyes! My eyes!" But today, lo and behold, I sat down and edited and wrote and it just came streaming out and it's not shit. It's not done yet either, but excellent progress was made. I'm currently 19 days out from my deadline. This is why I love my Type A personality.

*I'm not saying I'm a great writer, because I'm not. But, especially by hard science standards, I'm a very passable, sometimes prolific, writer.


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