That isn’t 750 words above — but it’s a sampling of some of the popular words I’ve written over the last few days with 750 Words. Confused? I’ll explain.
I started reading The Artist’s Way (yes, it is a bit spacey and hokey and a bit too God-centric for my liking but I have heard good things about it and I’m only on the first chapter so I’m reserving judgement), a book about finding one’s creative path. I could use a little more creativity in my life, really — yes, I write for a living, but I write facts, quotes, figures. I’m not a good painter, I don’t know how to sculpt. I can’t sing or play an instrument, but I have words, and I miss using them in a way that is a little more abstract than journalism.
The Artist’s Way encourages morning pages. Three pages, long-form, every morning. Free-writing, basically, which I was originally introduced to in Grade 6 by my favourite teacher of all time. Do you know how hard it is to free-write three pages?! I write that much for work, yes, but sitting there first thing in the morning with an empty brain has led to me writing, basically, “I don’t know what to write, I am bad at this,” for all three pages (which is allowed).
So, 750 Words is kind of an amalgamation between long-form free-writing and the glory that is technology. Yes, I could write my three pages (roughly 750 words) by hand, but I type faster and more clearly on a computer. The hardest part of doing it electronically, however, is resisting the urge to backspace and edit — I have to go with what comes out onto the screen, no changes.
I think my favourite part of 750 Words, though, is the stats function built in, something I would definitely not get out of writing by hand. The site analyzes both individual days of writing, and all of your writing done on the site, looking for average words per day, emotions, concerns, word usage, mindset, view of time, senses, and all of that juicy metadata-like stuff. It also compares all of that information to your recent writing, your all-time writing, and global averages. I love charts so this is right up my alley!
I have the site set up to send me a reminder email every day at 7 a.m. Sometimes I don’t get to it right away, sometimes all I write is junk, sometimes I get good insights from it. I’m going to try and embrace the whole concept, even if The Artist’s Way turns out to be crazy ramblings.
The future of the site seems to be up in the air right now, but if you want to try out free-writing I’d check it out!