While I’m writing my first draft, I occasionally make notes for my future edits. Notes to a future self if you will. Usually, they aren’t very detailed. Rather, quick thoughts and feelings about a paragraph, a piece of information, or something I might need to double check. Then, there are the notes that read Mind Vomit. Anytime I put “Mind Vomit” in a note, it essentially tells my future self that a piece of writing is so awful, it’ll likely need to be entirely re-written. Read it again, future self, and decide if you want to remove it or not. Why do I do this?
In my past article How I Write 3,000 Words Per Hour, I talk about the idea of keeping the door closed when you write and keeping it open when you edit. Of course, the phrase is not entirely literal. When you’re writing your first draft you shouldn’t bother yourself with critiquing and editing every last sentence. Too many writers think the first draft should be perfect, and if it’s anything less, they have to start all over. Other writers trudge through a bog of their own making, continuously re-writing their first paragraph. They get so drained and exhausted. It’s no wonder why they give up. Believe it or not many, many writers do this (and have done…