It’s getting late, I say to myself. It’s getting late, and yet I sit down to write my two hundred daily words.
Truth be told, I am no longer counting my words. The writing practice is just that–a practice–occasionally more fruitful, but most of the time simply steady. The ritual of sitting down to write is not always the same: there are days I write in my journal, with that favorite pen–the ink flows just so when I use it, and the pace of my longhand matches the speed with which I carefully carve my thoughts into words and sentences. Not many crossed-out words in my journal.
Other days, I tap away at my keyboard. The fingers move faster than the internal monologue can shape itself into language, and I have to pause and compose. Sometimes I have to pause for what feels like a long time.
I have saved my journals for a number of years now (a decade, maybe). I like to revisit and re-read what I’d written, and I’m frequently surprised at what I find. “Did I write that?” Well, I must have–this is in my handwriting!–but the depth of insight seems to have come from a mysterious place. Maybe I should return to my journals more frequently: there are some real gems on those pages.
Not surprisingly, the writing I do at my keyboard is very different. The words are carefully considered, arranged just so, run through a thesaurus… And yet I do not return to them. They are written and then filed away, forgotten, buried. It’s a shame, really–the words are no less lovingly crafted than those inked, and hold no more or less value or wisdom. But somehow, they feel more ephemeral to me, more disposable…
I am hoping this blog will change things. This ought to be the way to capture, to document, to tether the words and phrases and concepts that would otherwise find their way into cyber-abyss on the hard drive of my computer.
This is, after all, The Experiment. Phase one is in progress. And phase two? It will come to me.