Saturday, April 28, 2012

Do Lists Count as Writing?

The standard advice to make a list may have its place, but it takes too much time away from writing. Does it make sense to snatch a few minutes during a busy day to write, only to spend that time on busy work instead?

Lists can be used in writing to keep each character's details straight throughout a story or book, but they may limit the way we "draw" those characters. Granted, apps and other computer aids can make list making simpler, but they also distract more than encourage.

In modern times, we have everything we need at our fingertips to write and continue writing. Then why is it that we insist on making this creative process more complicated through list making and rule making? It's one thing when we take a list and make a picture out of it, or play with the words and color the ideas. When we have this much freedom, it's best to wring life out of all writing.

If you, on the other hand, produce book after short story by writing lists, by all means continue. I'll limit my lists to grocery items and the piles of house repairs I'm avoiding in order to write this blog and put the finishing touches on my YA SF books.

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