Creative habits

It is very early in the morning. Being the first one up in the house has some advantages. Things right now are so quiet. Writing first thing in the morning seems to be working out. Today is the 60th day in a row for posting something to this weblog. That feels like progress is being made along the path toward being a productive writer. Part of the idea of writing every day is to refine the skill of generating prose. Sitting down and just writing for the sake of writing is not really like riding a bicycle for me. Refining and reinforcing my creative habits requires sustained effort. Being able to sit down and write solid prose is something that I have to practice on a daily basis to be productive. That is in part about being reflective and building up to an ongoing narrative. Writing for me is an iterative process and I refine things from day to day. Maybe that is a polite way of saying that the content day to day on this weblog includes a lot of repetition and content rework over time. Maybe that is to be expected in terms of keeping a functional journal of writing and thoughts. My thoughts are not going to be unique and separate each new day. That is why for me having a creative habit of daily writing is very important to being productive as a writer. 

Right now the pattern of that habit is very clear. I wake up and make two shots of espresso. That small glass of espresso ends up on the desk in my office. A new blank word processing document gets opened and the writing process starts until it is done. Normally that end is an interruption of some type. Having hours of uninterrupted writing time is a luxury that no longer exists in my daily routine. Trying to figure out how to kick start it again seems impossible. That means that making the most out of 30 minutes or an hour has to be the way forward. That is the creative habit that needs to be fostered and encouraged. One of the problems with this method of being creative is that in the past a lot of my better efforts occurred after a massive false start. Another way of saying that would be to describe the first hour of a three hour block of writing as a false start. Sometimes getting warmed up is what helps breakdown blockers and move past a false start into a better writing space. Sitting down and wrestling with the blank page is just how it goes sometimes and it has to be the path forward. That is what refines the words being produced and increases the quality of the prose. Sitting down and writing in a stream of consciousness like this passage of prose from start to finish in a format that can be shared is a skillset that developed out of practice. Now that the method of prose creation has been defined maybe it would be good to think about the output from that method. 

Topics end up getting coverage entirely based on what comes to the forefront of my thoughts. During the 3,000 word a day writing exercise I had to keep a list of topics to help fill up that much space every day with the written word. Sitting down to write a single page of prose is a little bit different in terms of topic selection. Generally, I just start writing until the practice of typing on the keyboard takes me to the conclusion of the writing session. Inherently the practice of starting the writing process is what leads the way to the end. Something happens along the way that helps move things along. You might be able to call it the spark of creativity or maybe the heart of imagination. Finding the power of expressiveness during the course of writing helps push things along. It opens the door to translating both what is not said and what has been said into a broader work of prose. Figuring out how to write about the things that go unsaid is less about ingenuity and more about candor and being direct about the nature of things. Within the broader conversation going on in public a lot of guardedness exists based on a degree of self-censorship that ultimately taints civility instead of strengthening it via honest dialogue. Within that last sentence a lot of meaning has to be extracted. Communicating the things that go unsaid is the hardest part of being heard within the public square or within any type of interpersonal communication.

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