Abandon Text!

W. H. Auden once said: "Poems are not finished; they are abandoned." I have been abandoning writing projects for many years, since only the pressure of deadline and high expectations ever got me to finish, or even start, anything of merit. This blog is an attempt to create a more consistent, self-directed writing habit. Hopefully a direction and voice will emerge.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Simple wins

Why is it that the simple things seem to have so much more traction in life? My son got all sorts of birthday presents -- books, CDs, a pogo stick -- but what are the biggest winners? A stuffed gorilla he picked out himself . . . and the small plastic dinosaurs that decorated his cake. Never underestimate the glorious power of the simple and the obvious.

I remember Greg Hohn of the Transactors providing similar advice about doing improv. "You would be surprised how funny it is to say the obvious. So many people get stuck in improv trying to think up some crazy twist on the situation, instead of just naturally reacting to what's been given to them by the other players."

I see the same dynamic playing out all over the place in my life. Instead of trying to cook up something thoughtful and deep to write about, I just write about what I'm really thinking about, which tonight happens to be toy dinosaurs. And surprisingly, toy dinosaurs work. Simple. Obvious.


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