Writing is learning

For me, writing is a messy process.

I agonize over opening sentences. I use the backspace button a lot. I delete whole paragraphs, rewrite, then realize I liked it better the first time. I often start with a kernel of an idea, start to flesh it out, then abandon it. I constantly edit, even before I finish a full draft. I start, then stop and put it aside, then go back a day or two later.

I almost always start off confused about what I know and what I want to say. But almost always, when I'm finished, my mind is clear. My thoughts are in order. And I've learned something.

It's an incredible, satisfying feeling to stop at the end of writing and know that the fuzzy, foggy jumble of information and ideas I started with are now right there in front of me, crystal clear and in their rightful places.

Yes, writing can be about demonstrating knowledge and understanding, and about sharing it with others. But at least for me, it's an essential step in the process of learning.

Happy National Day on Writing!