It’s something that I’ve been noticing among a lot of writers. Not so much in books as on blogging websites and forums when they discuss their “writing”. (Which we never see). Many of them seem more concerned about getting a ton of words on the page than they do about making the words count toward a wonderfully told story.
“Just get the first draft down!” They seem to say. Their pen quivers in their hands as they scribble down the next sentence which contains the same words and funny phrases that they used a couple pages ago. “It’ll be a kick!” They aspire, but rarely do they seem to accomplish.
Such is the path of a dead dreamer.
So many writers dream. I respect their dreams, their wishes, but it’s a lack of drive and passion that keeps them from reaching their goals. Sacrifice is an element that I’ve been discovering and some of that sacrifice means time and patience. Taking lots of time to write down the perfect phrase, and having the patience to find the perfect word. The right sentence can mean the difference between making a reader cry out in anguish for a character, or them setting the book down because they found it too poorly drawn.
I do not mean to say that I am a perfect writer, but I have been trying to eradicate those untimely words and phrases from my writing. To keep myself from putting something on the paper that will be “good enough” until I revise it months later. It’s hard, it requires thought and more time that I am really comfortable with, but I have been starting to be happier with my writing because of it. I do not restrict myself to word counts. If I get 2000 words down in a day, and that was all I was trying to do, then fine, that goal was accomplished. But if I get 1000 passionate and meaningful words down, then that is far, far better than any word count will ever be.
Our culture revolves around pushing things out so quickly that we have lost the reality of quality. Do not become the next cliche, make every word count so that when you have a finished product, it won’t be “good enough” but will instead be something to remember. Quantity is not quality, and quantity will not by cherished like like quality will. Glass is pretty, but it is the diamond that stands the test of time.