Writing that Essay

 First published on LinkedIn

"Write an essay of not less than 3000 words and not more than 5000 words. You may choose your topic." That was my instruction.

No problem. Nothing to it. I can write. I write all kinds of stuff. I know what I want to write about. I have the evidence to support my stance. I can do it. That was my thinking.

I got out my computer, opened a word processing programme, wrote my title and before I knew it, my first draft was underway. In one night, I completed my first draft, not quite 3000 words, but enough to build the rest of my essay. By the second night, I had completed writing and editing my essay. It was ready for the world of readers who like the stuff that I write.

That was a dream, though. 

I would love to be able to be that kind of a writer who gets an idea and immediately manages to capture it in all its complexity in writing. But alas, I am not that kind of a writer. I get many ideas, wonderful ideas, but either I don’t feel compelled to memorialise them in writing or I take forever to capture exactly what I want to say.

I aim to be like a colleague who conceptualizes the world in wonderful ways and manages to capture his ideas at the moment he is experiencing them so that they are ready for the world almost as soon as they are conceived. He has the ability to 'wrestle with his thoughts' and manages to pin them down. I hope to be able to 'pin down' more of my thoughts as quickly as he does. I take days, weeks even, to fine-tune my thoughts on a possible topic before I am able to 'put it down on paper'. I will try to narrow that gap as my writing journey continues.

Whatever type of writer you are—a prolific writer who produces quality work all the time or a writer who struggles to capture your thoughts in the way you want—just write. The phrase 'practice makes perfect' applies to writing, like anything else, even though you may not think that you have achieved perfection in your work.

But what is this perfection anyway? Your work will not resonate with everyone in the same way but for those with whom it resonates, it is perfect for their purpose. For those with whom it doesn’t resonate, it is mere crap. Try not to dwell in the camp of those who trash your writing. Celebrate with those who celebrate your work while doing the research to improve your writing and writing style, no matter how good you think your writing is.

The important thing is to capture your story and find an editor to smooth out the rough edges. You will be proud to see your ideas take shape in the way you wished that you had captured them initially.

I might write a 3000 or even a 5000-word essay one day, but today is not that day.

About the Author

Janette B. Fuller is a ghost writer and author of four books. 

When you are ready to write your story and/or after you have written your story, make contact with her at writingwisdomtree@gmail.com. She'll help you write your best story by helping you arrange your thoughts and/or edit your work. Check out her books here


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