One of the most beautiful discoveries of the past year has been the truly conversational and collaborative nature of writing. I had no idea so much conversation was involved in what at times is a very solitary activity. It’s a realization I am very grateful for having encountered.
When it comes to ghostwriting for people, it’s happened enough times now that I can acknowledge it as a personal truth: writing is both solitary and conversational.
In some cases, I can ghostwrite strictly from raw written material. But in my favorite partnerships, conversation is an integral part of the process for me. I need (and want) to be able to talk through what I’m getting and dig deeper into what the person is really trying to communicate.
It turns out that while writing is at times very solitary, I personally most enjoy the collaborations that very much involve conversation with the author. The conversational piece allows me to get deeper into the message and really helps when I go back on my own to play with words.
Realizing how significant conversation is in the writing process was unexpected. So was the awareness that I really enjoy writing with men. If you’d told me a year ago that either would become true, I would not have believed it.
Right now, the only thing keeping me close to sane are my phone and video conversations. I took two walks around the neighborhood today just to get out of the house. I cannot imagine how extroverts or people with children are coping right now. I’m not sure if neighbors have started medicating their exceedingly loud children…but thankfully they’ve been more subdued today.
It’s true that even experiencing trauma can’t shut me up and I continue to have the most intriguing conversations with so many people in my life. This awareness may have been unexpected, but it now makes a lot of sense. Even with my own writing, it involves conversation on a variety of levels and I enjoy that.
A lot can change in a year, and as traumatic and awful as 2019 was; this awareness of the conversational dimension of writing is one of the biggest gifts that it brought.
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