Spending Time Re-Writing

February 05, 2021

Original thread: https://twitter.com/das_connor/status/1357696989266382849

I spent January learning to write online.

Step 1: Write every day.

Forming the habit was the easy part. But how can I become a better writer?

Step 2: ???

I kickstarted my year with @dickiebush's #ship30for30 writing program. I wrote and shipped an atomic essay every day for 30 days.

This practice taught my writing speed and consistency.

Atomic essays are a great format! They force you to explore a single idea and get straight to the point.

But there's a tradeoff.

Shipping ~250 words in an hour or two doesn't leave much time for editing.

It's one thing to ship quantity, but am I shipping quality?

My goal: Spend more time thoughtfully re-writing.

Learning new writing strategies from @Julian and @Nicolascole77 isn't enough. I need to put them into practice. Writing for speed makes that hard to do.

My idea: balance quantity with quality.

Write every day, but alternate between atomic essays and a long-form piece.

I’ll produce 3-4 atomic essays per week and use my best atomic essays to build pillar pieces every 1-2 weeks.

I plan to constrain myself to ~1000 words until I'm more comfortable with a longer format.

My longer essays won’t fit into a tweet, but I still plan to capitalize on Twitter’s leverage. I’ll post them on my blog, and summarize them in a thread.

My daily reminder: focus on the language!

Atomic essays are for refining ideas and long-form is for revealing their elegance.

I want to express myself with clarity and finesse.

I'd love to hear what strategies you used to become a better editor and re-writer.

If you're interested in taking this journey with me, #ship30for30 is a great way to get started: https://enroll.ship30for30.com/ship-30-for-30-february-enrollment/o2fmo


© 2020 Connor Daly