Writer’s Desk: Don’t Write Anything Down

notebook1There are a couple salient moments in this interview with Stephen King. The first is when he gives some counter-intuitive advice about ideas for stories:

I don’t write anything down, any ideas ever, because that’s a good way to immortalize really bad ideas. The bad ideas fall out. It’s a natural Darwinian process. They go away somehow. It’s like throwing a bunch of crackers in a sieve. Some of those ideas shake out because the crumbs get too small, but the big ones stay…

It could make for an interesting experiment. Let the ideas come and if they’re still there by the time you’re ready to put them to page, then those are the keepers. How many of us have gone back to a notebook, looked at a scrawl that seemed amazing at the time, and wondered what the hell we were thinking?

The second memorable quote comes in his response to the interviewer’s question about what is driving King’s current prolific phase: “I’m not as a prolific as I used to be.”

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