Why is writing so difficult

August 26, 2011 | By | 1 Reply More

Why is writing so difficult, and why is it that I write so slowly? These are two questions addressed by a well-written and presumably slowly-written article by Michael Aggar at Slate.

Kellogg is always careful to emphasize the extreme cognitive demands of writing, which is very flattering. “Serious writing is at once a thinking task, a language task, and a memory task,” he declares. It requires the same kind of mental effort as a high-level chess match or an expert musical performance. We are all aspiring Mozarts indeed. So what’s holding us back? How does one write faster? Kellogg terms the highest level of writing as “knowledge-crafting.” In that state, the writer’s brain is juggling three things: the actual text, what you plan to say next, and—most crucially—theories of how your imagined readership will interpret what’s being written. A highly skilled writer can simultaneously be a writer, editor, and audience.


Category: Communication, Writing

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. Ray Shoop says:

    Why is writing so difficult?
    I don’t know why Mr. Aggar’s writing is so agonizingly slow. But I do know why this writer, afflicted with a dyslexic diseased brain, is well aware of the painful aspects of writing. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Slowness breeds caution. Along with my spelling and grammar checker and slow typing, we make it through the day.

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