How long does writing take?

Q: How long does it take you to write 600 words? (That’s the equivalent of two double-spaced typed pages.)

A: Three hours. Two hours and forty-five minutes of procrastination (say:  a cup of coffee, a book, a bath, a sandwich, and some wandering around the house worrying about the clutter, and all this on a GOOD day) and fifteen minutes of writing.

Q: Fifteen minutes, huh? That’s fast. You must write a lot.

A: I taught myself to type in high school and then worked as a secretary for several summers. Letters can indeed come out of my fingers at the rate of 600 words in 15 minutes, which is 40 words per minute. But most of those words suck, to be honest. They’re probably going to be rewritten ten times over.

Q: Why not just go slower and write it correctly the first time?


Q (defensively): What?

A: I have only the haziest idea of what I am going to write until I have written it. It’s sort of like driving a car on a foggy night with no road and your eyes closed.

Q: Well, good luck with that.

A: Thanks.

pencil and notebook3

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