|Albert Einstein's residence in Princeton, NJ, |
from 1933 to 1955 (photo by Philip Vassallo).
The problem many workplace writers face when drafting is one of self-confidence. Such folks fall into three categories:
- Grim Grammarians - These people are so aware of inflexible grammatical rules and corporate communication standards that they dare not write anything they consider "wrong," resulting in limited output.
- Nervous Novices - These writers, as newcomers to the workplace or to a company, have no reliable standards to follow, so they feel lumps in their throat, knots in their stomach, and hives on their fingers when they need to write to a large internal or external audience, or even to their teammates or managers.
- Linguistic Lowbrows - These writers are keenly aware of their weaknesses in sentence structure and word usage; consequently, they dread being exposed and embarrassed by their substandard use of language, regardless of their exceptional subject-matter expertise.
What a perfect way to spend four hours. An otherwise regular Sunday workday became an unplanned drive to Princeton full of unexpected surprises, including a fine museum exhibit, a free choral concert, a discovery of a useful book, and an invigorating walk. Most important, I enjoyed quality time with my wife. All of this just by letting serendipity happen. Not bad for a guy who nearly always remains a slave to his busy schedule!
Writers can easily do the same thing by letting their brain connect to their fingers, typing one word after another until something of value comes out. Don't let the rules of writing stop you. My friend, there are no rules.