Alex's Stuff | And Things

Archive for January 2010

Jan/10

20

On Writing

I’d just like to briefly observe something that I guess is fairly obvious about the nature of writing things to be read by other people.

Conveying experiences perfectly is impossible.

You’ll agree this is pretty obvious. However, I think I’ll go further than this – giving anything more than a hint of an experience was like is a fantastically difficult task.

The problem is that the main way in which authors build images in the mind of the reader is by calling on the reader’s experience and imagination, two things which by their very nature vary wildly from person to person. This means that writing a book that nearly everyone can enjoy is a virtual impossibility (and yet some incredibly talented and lucky authors manage it).

Even writing a message for a specific person requires you to know precisely how that person thinks, under what conditions it will be read, and how the person will be feeling when they read it.

Such is the hazard of communication.

I’m sure that this has all been said before. This is just my own attempt at explaining an experience of it.

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On #coffeetime

Coffeetime is the eternal state of being that defines our presence in the world. It both is and is not finite, linked as it is to both a finite resource (time), and to the infinite reach of human imagination.

As such, you should understand that the question "when is coffeetime?" is more than a mere request for temporal details. It is a spiritual call for guidance and a link back to reality.