Person writing in a notebook with a laptop in front

Revelations on Writing: Writing vs. Publishing

I write every day as part of my daily routine.

I brain dump ideas for projects, I do interstitial journaling, I complain and talk about how annoyed I get when my barista gets my name wrong. I do a morning pages exercise every day as stream of consciousness writing to clear my mind.

But what I’ve since learned, is that writing alone is not enough.

TIL: Writing and Publishing are different.

Even though I write every day, it’s only recently that I began this experiment of publishing daily. Before, and quite frankly even now, I still strongly believe that my daily thoughts and ideas do not warrant publishing every day.

This is a question I am attempting to exercise through this ten day exercise, where I attempt to write daily as often as possible on a singular subject as a way to get my thoughts down on my paper.

I still primarily believe that for the most part, my ideas and topics of the day aren’t worth sharing out loud. They may be half-baked, or full of my own internal biases that I don’t recognize are blindspots.

There is far too much noise, not enough signal.

My writing is comprised primarily of notes and fleeting thoughts.

Because there is no accountability of external eyes, when looking back at my old notes I find they seem scattered, erratic and make little sense.

In some ways, this mini essay is my attempt at convincing myself why frequent publishing is important.

And for that matter, what is a good balance between writing and publishing?

Publishing = accountability.

When you write to publish, even if it’s to an invisible audience, as the author you are suddenly entrusted with responsibility.

It is your duty to share some semblance of a concrete thought, with strong conviction or a compelling argument.

You’ll need to have examples to back up your writing; when you write to publish, you have created a container for yourself. Within the span of X words, your aim is to get your point across. You do not have the luxury of time and rambling thoughts. You’ve entered into a contract with your reader, and you must fulfill the obligation of communicating on the subject matter at hand.

In fact, what I’d love to show here is an example of the fleeting notes brain dump of an article, compared to the polished piece as a form of compare and contrast.

I wonder how I might be able to accomplish this. I really would love to show a good example instead of telling this aspect.

Writing for oneself is great — it’s a great way to help you think out loud and process your thoughts. At the same time, because it is only for yourself, your brain holds tons of shortcuts around context. Look at anyone’s public journal and quite often, to the external reader, the conversation at hand makes little sense.

There is so much additional work required to explain something to an outsider.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© Copyright - Yina Huang