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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Simply Writing

The nitty gritty of writing is first and foremost about simply writing. that’s it in its most basic, essential core: WRITE.

The term “simply writing” may seem like an oxymoron because writing is comprised of so many steps, so much effort, so much mental energy, and so much time. And too often we get bogged down in all that we think writing is – the word choice, perspective, tenses, grammar, cohesion… We get overwhelmed by the potential of being read or the fear of not being read, the approval or disapproval of our work… We stop ourselves before we even get started!

Sure, all these things and more make up the nitty gritty details of producing a piece of writing, but first, you simply have to WRITE. Bring your mind to a screeching halt and silence all the crap that is clanging around in your head; strip yourself of all that burdensome baggage and just WRITE.

Go back to the phrase “simply writing” and notice that it is active.

Writing: n. “the act of a person or thing that writes” (
Simply: adverb. “in a simple manner; clearly and easily… wholly, absolutely … sincerely” (

Simply writing is the act of free-flowing pen on paper. Release yourself to the free-flowing pen because that is uncensored thought, ideas, images. It is the absolutely and sincerely of simply that gives life to the act of writing.

Simply writing is the essence of the nitty gritty of writing because the act of writing wholly, absolutely, and sincerely, is where you discover yourself and all your powers and limitations. And wish such self-discovery also comes the discovery of powers beyond yourself – powers without limitations. I’m talking about the inspiration and the unfolding of creating that surprises even you – the one who holds the pen. That free-flowing pen takes off and comes alive and you become both observer and participant in one.

You can’t plan or orchestrate this experience, you can only show up. And this is precisely what I mean when I say that the most basic aspect of the nitty gritty of writing is simply writing: you show up ready to engage; you take the pen and begin to dance. That’s it. You do this regularly and the stuff you want to write about multiplies over and over. Your skills get better, the dance picks up speed and before you know it, you are performing complex movements beyond your dreams.

You will eventually deal with all that other nitty gritty stuff later, but first and foremost, WRITE: get in the act of simply writing.


  1. My flow gets disrupted and bogged down by my editing as I go along. I find myself stopping and looking up a suitable synonym, better phrasing. I'm going to try your way, and see if I get a better flow. Thanks for your writing simply!

  2. What you are doing is also important, Norma, but my aim is to encourage first to just write freely without the judgments. And yeah, I think you will get into more flow that way. Keep me posted!