My first step is to formulate substance through letting my mind semi-unconsciously connect ideas, then I free write main points with some attempt at organizing them, and after that I examine them and play with them like a jigsaw puzzle. Then I reach the second step and write a first draft and try to identify unrelated, inaccurate, or repeated matter. My third step is to review and polish my writing after ignoring it long enough for me to be able to look at it through fresh eyes.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
It was Tom Sawyer. I read it to myself when I was very young – the only book read to me was the Bible – and after reading that I started spending all my free time either running around in the woods, or sitting somewhere quiet and reading classics. I finally stopped myself from my classical literature addiction when I was thirty years old because I had spent almost my entire twenty-ninth year on this planet doing nothing but reading Balzac.
After our 80,000 year flight from The Garden of Eden we are now descending into Paradise. So that your transition into Paradise is as painless as possible, please read these short essays before we land.