How Fast Can You Write?

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Left image: From Pexels
When you're sick, you really have no choice but to rest. However, I made a choice to still be productive. Aside from the unexpected rescue situation I did for my team at work (I gotchu mates!), I started decluttering my laptop because why the hell not. Pictures folder cleared. Desktop nearly cleared because I stopped to check out what I've stumbled upon: one of the exercises our friend and mentor, Evan made us do last year. He told us to use The Most Dangerous Writing App. In my head, what is this? Is this some sort of game? But it's deadlier than that. It's actually a website where you can just type any story or thoughts you have in mind in 3 to 60 minutes. Your choice. You can set the time that you're comfortable with or you can do hardcore mode if you're such a pro. But the catch is: YOU CANNOT STOP WRITING. Yes, you can't or all your progress will be lost. See example below:
I've been writing for work and for my blog, and I've never felt so pressured in my entire life. I feel like I was tasked to do a write-up and the submission is... NOW! The topic was to write your own eulogy. So obviously nagpa-panic pa din ako (I''m still panicking in my write-up). Every time you will erase a word, everything you wrote will slowly fade. Once it disappeared completely, that's the end of the line for you. That's already your masterpiece. it could be open-ended or you were able to finish it. Good job for you!

Reading this again made me realized how many grammatical errors I committed and how decluttered my mind was. That's us most of the time, right? But more than that here are a few things I was able to analyze and process looking back to that experience.

1. I was too conscious to write. That makes us overthink everything. Kaya marami ang di nakakatapos kasi masyado nating iniisip kung ano ang iisipin ng iba (most of us can't finish the challenge because we're too conscious on what people will think and say about what we write).
2. I was panicking. Free up your mind. Breathe and you'll be surprised where your pen and paper will take you--or for this one, your keyboard and the app).
3. I knew and believe that I will fail. Feeling ko sobrang pangit ng sinulat ko and ng ginawa ko (I feel like everything I've written was not good enough).

Kaya ngayon, naisip ko bigla, "ulitin ko kaya for 5 minutes?" (Now that I thought about it, what if I do it again for 5 minutes?) 3... 2... 1...

Since I feel like writing in Filipino, that's what I did. It's basically my eulogy 2.0. But after doing the exercise again, I think I've learned more than I should. Here are some of the things I've pondered on:

1. Say everything you want to say. Parang sa life, hindi mo alam hanggang kailan mo pa masasabi yung mga gusto mong sabihin. So habang may time pa, just keep expressing what you feel. You've got nothing to lose.
2. Don't look back. Pinipilit mo pa kasing balikan. Ayan! Nawala tuloy lahat... ng sinulat mo! We can't keep dwelling on what could have been and what should have been. Just keep moving forward. Don't stop writing. You might encounter errors, mistakes, and even fail, but it's okay. I'm telling you, it's okay. That's when you'll learn.
3. Just continue. No more room for inhibitions and anxieties. Just go for it. Give it a try. Same with writing, you can always check your work or edit it out once you're done. Then you'll learn from it. Don't disrupt the creative juice. In life, you can always take a step back and reflect on the things you've said and done. If you feel like it was not good enough, you always have a choice to make things better the next time around.
4. Never stop. When I turned a favorite hobby of mine into my profession, I felt like I was starting to hate. It was the worst feeling ever. I can write for work because it was my job but I can't seem to write for ME. It was a sad thought. But then I realize, nobody was stopping me but me. Yeah, maybe I'm drained today, or too stressed tomorrow, but there are more days in a year to still give it a go. And that's what I'm doing now. Writing with every chance I've got and it feels wonderful. I plan to do it again and again.

I hope you learned something from me today and you give this app a go! It's a good icebreaker for your creative or writer's block!

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Style Reader by Arra Abella is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. Images and text are copyrighted, unless stated otherwise. Therefore, if you want to use any of these, feel free to contact me.