Challenge Journal 1: Starting at the End

My writing routine starts with lots of preparation. It takes me about a week to figure out what I want to write, some time to research my topic (if necessary), and a couple of days to perfect my outline. Throughout this time, I feel stressed and ineffective. As someone who works in the writing center and has taken many writing classes, I know that every part of the writing routine is important. But, mentally, when you know that you don’t have even a first draft in your back pocket, you have a sense of panic.

Because I devote so much time to preparation before putting words on paper, the actual writing doesn’t take that long. This part of the writing process, when you furiously type all of your ideas out, is my favorite. The words just flow out, like vomit.

But, my biggest writing fear is ending. I am notoriously weak at ending my writing. I think it’s a psychological thing – I also hate ending things in real life. Or, maybe I’m just exhausted by the point I get to writing the ending. Perhaps I’m so done with writing that my endings just always turn out trash. I have a tendency to write in the same room in the Michigan Union. It has decent ambiance but it’s also very chilly. Maybe I just get too cold to pay attention.

Either way, in order to devote more attention to my endings, I’ve decided that it may be a good idea to write them first. Or in the middle. Either way, I’m going to avoid writing it last.

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