This is topic The perils of perspicuity in forum Grist for the Mill at Hatrack River Writers Workshop.

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Posted by History (Member # 9213) on :
I am (yet again) on call today, and returning home I recognized that I had accomplished far more and did far more good in three house at the hospital than I did all week (or month) in my writing, even despite an output of ~30K.

While I re-read and continue to edit two stories this weekend, I need express how they simply seem...not to the professional standard I would hope after so many more hours I spent writing and editing them.

I won't call it an epiphany, for it is neither a new or sudden self-awareness nor will it alter my behavior or dissuade me (or save me) from, in Sisyphus-fashion, seeking to write stories "good enough to publish" but, I need admit, I am a far better (and more successful) physician than writer. does not suffice.
So back to editing.

Dr. Bob
Posted by extrinsic (Member # 8019) on :
Doubt and indecision, hunches something's not quite working and something is missing in my writing have consumed my meditations these past several years. I found answers by studying writing topics and from closely reading narratives, focused writing, testing audience reception, and applying what I learned. I'm almost satisfied now, though the struggle continues.

One of the biggest advances in my writing came from realizing any scene ought to portray action, sensation, conversation, introspection, and emotion; and antagonism, causation, and tension; and how to accomplish same.
Posted by Pyre Dynasty (Member # 1947) on :
Great works of art are never completed, only abandoned.
Posted by rcmann (Member # 9757) on :
You did not become a competent physician except through many years of sweat and bull-headed perseverence. I know this for a fact, and I don't know anything about your background. Writing is like any other craft.
Posted by Robert Nowall (Member # 2764) on :
I can never figure out what's wrong with what I'm written until months or years have passed, and also long after I've sent it out and had it rejected. Worse, I still like some of them a lot, even after I've seen what's wrong with them...but I can't think of how to correct it.
Posted by kmsf (Member # 9905) on :
This quote keeps me going sometimes. “I write one page of masterpiece to ninety one pages of sh**... I try to put the sh** in the wastebasket.” - Ernest Hemingway in a letter to F. Scott Fitzgerald.
Posted by wetwilly (Member # 1818) on :
It is too early in the morning; I read the title of this thread as "the penis of perspicuity."
Posted by History (Member # 9213) on :
A penis of acute (though indiscriminate) perception.
Yes, I could have written that. [Wink]

Dr. Bob
Posted by Robert Nowall (Member # 2764) on :
I'd say something. But I fear it's leading us into a bad area.
Posted by Kathleen Dalton Woodbury (Member # 59) on :
Thank you, Robert.

Ahem! to the rest of you.
Posted by History (Member # 9213) on :
However a little randy ribaldry is oft a panacea to repressive pessimism.
Posted by shimiqua (Member # 7760) on :
I think it's because you can't measure the good a story will do for people if you don't get it in the hands of people. Many a bestselling book is imperfect. Many a bestselling does little more good than to entertain, but that is still a gift.

Get it done, and then get it to the people.
Posted by rcmann (Member # 9757) on :
Writing is a lot like cooking. I doubt that anybody started an internationally famous restaurant without learning to fry eggs at home first. Then hamburgers maybe? Or pancakes. Or cook rice. Then maybe learn how to steam some kind of vegetable. Then how to squish a spud.

Write a story. Shove it out of the nest. Write another story. Shove it out of the nest. Keep writing and trying, get fancier as you go along.
Posted by jayazman (Member # 2818) on :
I still can't cook rice....

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