Work in Idleness
My last post got some response. I was particularly interested by the comment by Frater R. O., who suggested that guilt is appropriate when one should be working, but isn’t.
I think there’s a place for idleness, though, in work. I sometimes think that the writing process itself is built on staring at blank walls and thinking about not much in particular in a conscious sense. But part of me just gets restless, and that’s the part that needs to calm down at the idea generation stage.
That might be why revision is becoming my favorite stage in the writing process. The ideas are there, and the goal is just to make them clearer — it’s a more defined goal than the earlier drafting stages, and best of all, there’s obvious improvement visible as one works. And, unlike editing, revision engages the actual ideas.