So for Prof. Warnick’s other class, Developing Online Content, we read a book called The Elements of User Experience. It’s a book about how to write websites with the user’s experience and ease of use as the top priority.
The way this book was set up, it split the website writing process into five distinct levels of planning and strategizing and organizing and implementing and stuff like that. Each level had a bunch of its own little sub levels as well.
The thing is, despite how this book set up the web development process in such a nice, clearly separated, planned, step-by-step way, I don’t think anybody in the class followed this development plan.
I mean, I’m sure our writing processes included all of the steps that were in the book. But nobody sat down and went through every level of development one by one. It was a much more free-flowing, intuitive process.
Which is a point about composition in general. I think a lot of people try to quantify the writing/composition process by splitting it up into concrete steps that can be measured. But most people don’t actually write like that.
We jump around in the writing process. We get ideas that don’t fit into the step we’re working on, so we start working on another step before the idea goes away. It’s a chaotic process that goes all over the place until eventually the job is done. Sure, most people at least start with basic strategizing and end with whatever end steps your particular project requires, but in between it’s a whole different game.
At least, that’s how it is for me and a lot of the people I know. We are intuitive writers.