Tuesday, June 17, 2008


It's easy to let it slip. I missed a day of the blog. And then another and then another, and suddenly three days had passed without posting anything.

Little things add up quickly. That's why it's important to keep up a consistent practice that will support your writing. Just as the empty days add up quickly, so, too do the days when we consistently work on a project.

Of course there are days and weeks where it may seem like the effort is not adding up--there are days where the efforts of previous days or weeks or months are scrapped for one reason or another. On such days it seems like the only progress is backwards. Progress can't always be measured in terms of pages added or pages deleted; it needs to be measured in terms of intellectual development. Eliminating pages because your argument has been clarified, and you can better see where you want to go is not necessarily time lost. Even on such days, continued work will help: continued work, will continue to build your most valuable possession and most valuable resource: your mind and your understanding of your project.

The idea of compounding, is, I think, important here because progress, like the growth of compounding, is not linear. As we move forward in our work, our ability to move forward also increases, so the more consistently we work, the more we have an opportunity to increase the progress we make. This is true, I think, on both the level of our intellectual understanding of a project, and in terms of our relationship with our work.

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