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Constrained writing

Saturday, January 29, 2022 at 10:02:56 AM

I recognize that I haven’t found my writing voice because my writing is constrained. I’m reading Scott Galloway right now.

Look for the best wave to ride. Twenty-five years ago, I chose to paddle into the e-commerce wave. My first effort (Red Envelope) failed. Even worse, it failed slowly … over 10 years. I stuck with it and started a firm that helped other firms develop e-commerce strategies (L2) and have owned Amazon stock for 12 years. It took me a while, but the strength of the wave kept me moving, and carried me to the beach. I just read the last sentence and am fairly certain I will never be a truly great writer. Anyway.

Galloway has found his writing voice. A reader may not like his writing—many do and many don’t—but his writing is unapologetically his.

Earlier today I was trying to write about suffering and triviality. It’s a weighty, philosophical subject. I’m not yet capable of handling the subject well because I haven’t yet found my writing voice. I can feel as I write that I’m playing it safe. It slows me down and limits my words. I’m trying to edit as I write because I hear “write simply” (Paul Graham).

I try to write using ordinary words and simple sentences.

Graham is someone who has found his writing voice. He is a very different writer than Galloway. He writes basic sentences on foundational concepts and impacts the lives of millions of aspiring entrepreneurs.

I want to write emotional, personal prose like Galloway. I also want to write simple, foundational prose like Graham. But I am neither of these people and I need to just start writing to find my writing voice.

At one point in my life, I was listening to and reading a lot of James Altucher. I tried his approach of writing overly personal things that scared me. I’d send the writing to friends. It didn’t end well. Ask my wife. 🤦‍♂️

I’m exploring the world of writing. I will finish and post my piece on suffering and triviality. I will document my latest code. I will write about my family. And I expect, with time and practice, I will find my writing voice and appreciate my writing.

And with this post, I complete my goal of writing five times this week. 🙇‍♂️


This post was not edited. If you see a typo, let me know and I'll fix it.