Saturday, April 12, 2008

The Blank Page (2)

I repeat myself when under stress.

I was trying to think of something worth writing this evening, and I was faced with the blank page, and for a moment was intimidated by it. Then I thought "ah, but I can write about the virtues of the blank page." Then I check and found that I had already previously written most of what I was thinking of writing: that the blank page is an opportunity and that it problems are mostly in how we see it.

The blank page is an opportunity--it does not restrict at all what we might do. And this freedom can be difficult: too many options makes choosing difficult.

One thing in particular that I like about the blank page is that it can play a wonderful role in helping one organize your thoughts. The blank page doesn't impose any previous way of thinking on you: you can start afresh, using all you learned as you worked to lay out the basics of whatever you're thinking about. And that may bear similarities to what you've said in the past but still it may have subtle (or not so subtle) differences of significance.

Putting an idea down on a blank page can be a great way to test an idea. So what if you decide that you're going to scrap what you wrote on that blank page? You can't live in fear of writing the wrong thing: then you'll write nothing. So take that blank page and fill it with a new idea--see if the idea makes sense--use the page to express yourself on some subject or another.

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