Structured Versus Unstructured Writing & Other Thoughts on the Writing Process

How much structure does one need to write something? I suspect it varies from person to person and from project to project. In my case for this blog, I generally gather ideas in notes on EverNote, usually in point form. When I judge I have enough to create a decent post I write from this “outline”. It’s a slightly less formal version of what I did in school but it adheres to that process fairly closely.

This post is a bit of an experiment. I’m just “free writing” (I’m not sure whether or not there is a better term for this) which is to say I’m writing on the page what coming directly from my head. There is no formal organization of my thoughts beyond what I think of at the time. I suspect I’ll either bog down in trying to be coherent or this post may drift in its subject as I go.

Part of why I’m trying this comes from my admittedly casual reading of other blogs here on WordPress and elsewhere on various writers’ writing process. I suspect most writers do have at least a vague outline of what they are writing. The mystery or conspiracy writer must know beforehand who or what is the murderer or the Illuminati organization behind the plot. Maybe I’m wrong here. It’s my opinion that any non-fiction opinion piece writer must work from something in order for his or her argument to be coherent and succinct.

Another piece of process I’m trying to work out is what tools I should be using to efficiently write considering I have a full time job, a young family, and other interests (imagine that!). EverNote has been a real help in providing a central location to maintain my thoughts and notes that is accessible via any web browser. Currently, I’m writing this on my laptop running an open source word processor called LibreOffice Writer but I’m thinking of switching over to a Google document on Google Drive. This will give me the mobility option (I can write on any computer or laptop) without having to fiddle with the WordPress interface. There might be a small issue with working between EverNote and a document but I think I can manage.

In the end, my hope is to write more and more frequently. I enjoy doing it. While I don’t know if I’m any good at it, I hope to improve. Maybe someone will come across this blog sometime in the future and find something useful in it.

One comment

  1. Pradeep · · Reply

    Definitely learned about the new tools to take notes and organize my thoughts 🙂

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