“Nothing to do to save his life, call his wife in.”
John Lennon wrote those words in 1968, I think it was. At least, that’s when the album came out. Or should I say “THE” album?
“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” was unlike anything the lads had ever done. It wasn’t the first concept album, nor would it be the last. But it had one distinct advantage over every other album released in those days: it was The Beatles! Of course it would be a hit!
How pervasive was the marketing power of the Beatles? Consider: when they finished recording “Hey Jude!,” producer George Martin told them no radio station would ever play the song, because it was over 7 minutes long. Paul McCartney just smiled at him and said, “They will if it’s us!”
Prophetic indeed. And that’s why even today, some 47 years after its initial release, you can still hear “Hey Jude!” on your radio.
But in the immortal words of Arlo Guthrie, that’s not what I came to talk about.
One of the problems I have writing regularly is that whatever program I use makes me feel pressured to make sure the current sentence is perfect before going on to the next. I know that’s not the most efficient way to write, but that’s just the way I am.
750Words is my experiment in trying to break that habit; I’m just going to concentrate on writing whatever comes to mind, and not worry about perfection. I can always go back later and fix things. Oh, I know I can do that with ANY writing tool I use, but somehow the clutter on Microsoft Word’s screen intimidates me into striving for perfection from the first word.
750Words is a web-based writing tool that presents you with a blank screen. The only potential distractions are a display of the running total of the number of words you’ve written so far. That’s it. Your daily goal is to write 750 words; hence the name of the site.
It doesn’t cost anything to use it, but you do have to sign up if you want to save your work.
I don’t feel the pressure for perfection there. It’s quite liberating, actually.
Spontaneity gets choked off when I strive for perfection. Giving up perfection means being able to just let the words come and if I interrupt a sentence with a completely unrelated though which since I suffer from ADD often happens, it makes no difference to anything. I can always go back later and fix things.
And speaking of ADD, in the short time I’ve been using this program, I’ve been able to concentrate more on my main thoughts and let the distractions float away. This may not makes any sense to you, but it does to me, and since I’m writing for myself and not for you, it’s important.
Something else I like is that the program is web-based. Somehow that also seems liberating. Since I can access my work anywhere, anytime I have a network connection, that removes even more pressure to be perfect all at once. I take my laptop with me when I travel (which is rare, these days), and I always have both my cell phone and my iPad Mini with me whenever I’m away from my flat.
At first I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to do 750 words a day, but the only other comparable program I could find only went to 100 words. That seems too few for serious writing, so that’s what sold me on 750Words. No writing program is perfect for everyone, but one that gives me the freedom to write without pressure comes pretty darn close.
Good Writing Habits
So this is the first step I’m taking in developing good writing habits: writing a certain number of words per day. And if I go over 750, so much the better. And unlike my blog, this will force me to at least stick to one topic. On the other hand, I might just copy some of what I write here into a blog post. Again, I have the freedom to do whatever I want with what I write.
And isn’t that what writing is all about? Freedom? Freedom to write, freedom to publish (or not), and freedom to do just whatever the hell I want to do with my own words.
So if you want to try a new writing tool, why not hop on over to 750Words and give it a try?