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Wed, 31 Mar 2010

Opus 61

"It is the end of the end!" said Ned Land.
-Jules Verne, 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea

Much in the manner of the Ironman triathletes after which this event was named, Dan Ichov and I, the survivors a larger starting field, now stagger across the finish line, sixty months and close to 200,000 words each from where we started. When we first set out on this little adventure, I (rather arrogantly and smugly) thought this would be easy -- after all, I was a reasonably good writer, and had never had any particular difficulties cranking out term papers and essays in school, or reports at work. How hard could this be, especially with an entire month to prepare?

Well, it turns out that this little adventure was a lot more difficult than I had ever realized it would be, mostly because I did not know then the limits of just how far one could go relying on last-minute inspiration and innate talent to reach such a demanding goal -- and not just once, but month after month, for five solid years. I had to teach myself the discipline needed to turn out these articles on time, every month, and I had to develop a technique for writing to a deadline that would work for me for the long haul. Although I always paid attention to words and content (I am the only person I know who would write drafts of letters to friends in those bygone days before email, Facebook, and Twitter made every unpolished passing thought a potential nugget to be cast out into the ether for all and sundry) I never payed much attention to the mechanics of writing. I would soon learn better.

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Posted Mar 31, 2010 at 01:56 UTC, 3214 words,  [/richPermalink