Bird by Bird

Virtue is its own reward, and so is writing. Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life is full of beautiful prose, characters, and personal anecdotes, and while her advice is tuned to the creative writer, there are three useful lessons that can be applied to all writing.

  1. write short assignments
  2. write only what you can see through a 1-inch picture frame
  3. write a terrible first draft

Blogging about what I am learning and reading forces me to think about what I experience. Almost every day I learn another 1-inch picture frame of programming, and writing it down helps me understand it better. My ugly first drafts usually consist of a question, a few links to resources, and some console output — not Pulitzer Prize winning prose, but an awesome personal resource and record of growth.

All you can give us is what life is about from your point of view. You are not going to be able to give us the plans to the submarine. Life is not a submarine. There are no plans.