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Mar 30, 2019 17:33:32

On doing things properly

by @rosieodsey PATRON | 212 words | 110🔥 | 194💌

Rosie Odsey

Current day streak: 110🔥
Total posts: 194💌
Total words: 69148 (276 pages 📄)

Not everything deserves it. But some things do, surely.

I've been reading John McPhee's Draft No. 4 where he describes the process of creative non-fiction as he has done for many decades for The New Yorker. Interviews, research, selection, structure, writing the piece, fact checking, copy editing, grammar checks, editing editing, editing down to fit the magazine.

On the other side of the spectrum we have little thought through tweets and one minute reads straight off the cuff.

Both have value. I worry about the halfway betweens. I worry about the 1000 word pieces with no references posted (and shared!) on pages and pages like long form graffiti. I worry about the well-researched academic pieces that remain on shelves because their authors do little to let the world know about them and make them findable.

I also wonder about what is worth doing properly across a range of contexts.

I'm happy to do my taxes in a good enough manner but writing a letter to a friend? That should be done properly.

What else?

  • Any book I ever write
  • Eating (with full attention and at a table)
  • Sleeping (at 10pm with no phones in sight)
  • Dancing (with full commitment to the practice)
  • Time spent one on one with anyone

I'll keep thinking on it.

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