If You Want to Write Better, Practice Writing Faster

Werner Herzog

“I can't write without that urgency. Something is wrong if it takes more than five days to finish a screenplay. A story created this way will always be full of life.” – Werner Herzog, Born Sep. 5, 1942.

Whatever you're working on, you're probably taking too long.

Do it faster. Stop honking around.

Focus on the absolute necessities. Leave everything else out.

Any time some part of a project is taking too long or keeping you “stuck”, it's almost always because that part doesn't belong there in the first place.

The struggle is caused by your brain trying to find a place to put a puzzle piece that doesn't even come from the same puzzle.

It's a waste of time and energy.

If you want to increase your productive output AND your quality at the same time, then try this.

The next time you're getting tripped up on a part of a project – or even a whole project – scrap it. Cut that part, or take a completely different direction. Don't waffle for days. Sleep on it one night, max.

Then either fix it immediately, or else kill it off and do without it. Getting held back by trivial trash is not serving your work.

Be decisive and ruthless and RAPID. Practice working constantly and consistently in this mode, and it will become easier and easier.

And your work becomes much more immediate, and direct, and raw… And ALIVE.

Not just dead words on a page or a screen.

Have you been stuck? Are you stuck now? Can you just cut that sticking point and continue on without it?

I bet you can.

Try it, and tell me how well it works afterwards.

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