When Content Trumps Mechanics

LettersThe other day I read an amazing story written by someone I know. The content of the story was gut-wrenching. The mechanics, however, were painful.

As a writer, I find it very difficult to turn off my internal editor.  When I’m participating in National Novel Writing Month, it comes down to writing as fast as possible and typos be damned.  The only thing that could hamper your effort is when your brain starts dictating faster than your fingers can fly across the keyboard.

Yes, that happens.

But in day-to-day writing I typically edit as I go, doing a couple checks after it’s finished and before it’s published.  However, not everyone has that same anal-retentive need to scour pages for typos.  Hey, I get it; some people can let it go.  Me? Not so much.

The story I mentioned was so filled with passion and emotion that I found myself nearly speed-reading to see what would happen next.  Where would they go?  Would he find more trouble?  It’s that kind of “super-content” that lets me push that internal editor out the window and just enjoy the story.  Know what I mean?

Those are the kinds of stories that I really love.  When you’re just so enthralled and into the story that you feel like you’re almost a part of it; you’re sad when you reach the end.  You don’t care if there’s punctuation other than an occasional period involved, let alone worry about an Oxford comma or semicolon.  You’ve shut off the inner monologue, put down your always-at-the-ready red editing pen, and settled in for the sheer joy of the story.

Yep, that’s when you know the content trumps the mechanics.  Cheers to those who write.  And don’t fret, there’s always spell-check.


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