That glorious feeling when you know your writing has improved

April 10, 2012 in On Writing by pacejmiller

Have you ever been working on a piece of writing when suddenly a light bulb goes off in your head and you realise that the standard of your writing has improved? That happened to me the other day and it was a totally glorious experience.

Now bear in mind that it is neither necessary true nor a lasting improvement, but at least for those few moments when I was writing it felt as though the words just came to be more easily, quicker, and with a broader vocabulary. Sentences I wouldn’t have been able to write before – or at least without first taking a toilet break, a beverage break and three walks around the block — were articulated in a breeze. It was awesome.

It reminds me of the saying that writing is a craft where talent counts but skills are honed over time through copious amounts of practice. I guess it makes sense, considering I’ve been doing a lot of reading and writing lately.

Unfortunately, this miraculous event occurred during the course of my employment, which deals exclusively with journalist writing that is fact-based (well, that’s debatable). I have yet to apply this new-found confidence to fiction writing, more specifically, my two work-in-progress novels. I hope to be able to do that soon.

That said, it might already be too late. Maybe it’s because of this splitting virus-induced headache that’s been hounding me recently, but I have regressed to the slow, incomprehensible turd I’ve always been over the last day or two. Damn it.