One word at a time

one_wordWhen asked, ‘How do you write?’ I invariably answer, ‘one word at a time.’ – Stephen King

Sometimes I catch a glimpse of the future. Whether is just a scene from a chapter I have yet to write, or the ending line, or just a few lines of dialogue. That’s magic. That’s power. I know something that no one else knows, and it’s entirely up to me to bring it to life.

And I want to get there. Now. I want to get to that scene, I want to write everything down. I feel there’s no time. Breathing fast and brokenly like a fish out of water, I try my best to write as many words as possible. And I’m afraid. Somehow, I’m afraid I won’t get there. I don’t want for the magic to get lost, to dissipate into the busy murmurs of true life.

But then I have to remind myself that you can only write one word at a time. It’s as simple, as difficult, as painful as that. And I have to let each word lead me to the next. I have to let the words show me the way.

This might sound like crazy talk to you, but, well, I never said I was normal, did I?

Sometimes I feel so much energy rushing through my veins that it paralyses me. I want to get the story out, but I don’t want to get it out one word after another. I want to get it out now. So most times I end up writing nothing.

And it’s strange because we always get there. And at the end of the day, when we re-read what we’ve written, we can’t really tell the difference between what came effortlessly and what came at a great price. You know, the words we had to bleed out of our soul.

One word at a time. One word after another. Slowly, painfully slow sometimes, but words form sentences, sentences form paragraphs, and paragraphs form chapters.

And sometimes we look back and we can’t understand how everything happened…


I’m overwhelmed by how many people have helped me in the last 48 hours. I’d like to thank Nor, Volkmar, Lorenzo, Jean, and all the others who have donated in the last day or so.

It gives me a lot of hope, and maybe, just maybe, I can find a solution to my medical problems.

If you’ve missed the posts where I’m explaining what happened, you can read about it here and here.

Also, if you’d like to help me out, you can do so by donating any amount you see fit here.

Thank you,



30 thoughts on “One word at a time

  1. “Sometimes I feel so much energy rushing through my veins that it paralyses me. I want to get the story out, but I don’t want to get it out one word after another. I want to get it out now. So most times I end up writing nothing.”

    I know exactly what this is like. The rush is magical and inspiring, but there’s a part of me that refuses to get the story out wrong, so I end up stunting the inspiration because I want it to be perfect. Word by word!


  2. That’s exactly it. But it’s my ending that keeps me going. I can’t wait to get to that point, so I slowly trudge down another alley of perseverance until we hit warp speed. Every day that I write is like launching a rocket into space–you have to break through the atmosphere to get to the moon and back.

    I wish you luck with your surgery and your writing!


  3. I feel like this right before I post. I want to find the perfect words to describe how I feel. I want to limit it, but there’s just so much to say. It is always a battle with myself. I tend to read it back repeatedly, too. lol


  4. I understand both. As a Theoligian I need to write all the time, but the ideas come easier and faster than the words. Would that we could write everything in pictures, it would be so much easier.

    I also have dental issues, close to the same as yours. I lost. One of my molars, and the cost, as you say, to replace it is high. I looked at having it done at a dental school, much cheaper, but they’re not open nights or weekends, so I have to take off work to have it done. Cost over here is about 3x yours, and dental insurance doesn’t include implants (of course). Fortunately, for me, it is optional. I can live easily with a missing tooth, since I do have the other molars. I hope things work out for you.


  5. I know the feeling. It’s almost like having a vision! I also normally do not end up writing it down cause of my impatience! Which is a tragedy. Great post! You are not alone in your weirdness! Don’t think it’s weirdness at all actually. :D


  6. I know that feeling of sudden inspiration and a rush of creative thought that I wish all my words were down on the paper, or that the words in my head can just be recorded and then converted into a word document. I can’t just sit down and write as soon as the words come though. I have tried that and sometimes it works, sometimes they don’t translate well to paper and always I end up exhausted and end up not sleeping well because I stayed up for so long that the next day I can’t even write the words down. So, I sleep it off, wake up the next morning, try to trigger the thoughts again, get through the morning routine and then I write. It was never the same as what was in my head the night before but it’s close enough.
    Sometimes I can only write one word a time but then it’s a sentence or a few sentences at a time, then I get into the flow and realise I’ve written several paragraphs.
    These days I don’t give enough care and attention and careful thought to my words because I just don’t have a clear enough head without medication, so I just spill it all out on a page and go back and fix it and include more details later.

    I’m curious though and we have been discussing this in another forum, but do you see the words as images or just as thoughts? For me most times I see images, like I’m watching a movie but other times especially when I come up with a blog post, it is just the sounds of words being spoken by a very energetic version of myself while the real me is so absorbed in these thoughts I am mute and rigid in posture, except for some restless legs.


  7. Do you write by hand with a pen or are you a keyboard user?

    I would love to write by hand but make too many alterations to be efficient, it’s the keyboard for me every time.


  8. I really know what you mean.
    For me, the first word is always the hardest to write. When I see this blinking cursor on the blank page in front of me it is like my head is nearly as empty as the page.
    But then comes this little spark of inspiration and I start typing the first word, then the first sentence, the first paragraph, the first page. In that way, page upon page filled with words come into existence. It is really an amazing process and if you look back at the end of the day you are amazed about yourself how much you accomplished by just writing one word at a time.

    By the way, this is a principle I have come to establish in my daily life. Do not look at the mountain to climb or the book to write. Just look at the next step ahead or the next word to write. Set certain milestones on the way and reward yourself by reaching them.
    I wrote about this principle in this post from last week:


  9. That paralysis is something I relate to so strongly. So desperate to get it all out RIGHT THIS SECOND that I end up doing nothing. And then I feel worse.
    Thank you for articulating it so well (much better than I could manage) and for sharing it.



  10. Very true and so beautiful. Some days there I think about so many things to write and never get down to pen my thoughts. There is a stream of ideas and words running our mind all the time, but its important how we handle it. This is the best article I have read today. Thank you so much for sharing.


  11. In my case, I definitely prefer speaking to writing. But the computer has made that easier. Yet, what hampers me is my Energy and Time. Yet, as You say, it is all one word at a time!

    Do Hope and Pray Your tooth problem gets better. Praying for You.

    Love and Regards.


  12. This is a well written piece and I can relate to it so much! Sometimes I feel like I have the story in m head and I know how it goes and how the characters live and act out life, and when it comes to write it, my words become blank and harder than ever to put thoughts into words. Fantastic words here.


  13. Your connection to the UNIVERSE is strong and your UNIVERSAL understanding of writing is precise. LOVE your writing. “And at the end of the day, when we re-read what we’ve written,” sometimes I don’t even recognize my own words!


  14. Very well said, although I wish I could experience that ‘glimpse into the future’ of which you speak. I never seem to be able to find that inspirational drive. Writing is a painfully slow process for me. I keep hoping that if I continue to do it, the words will someday begin to flow. Nevertheless, when I finish something and read it over, I’m always amazed at what is there. You put it very well.


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