There is a difference for me in thinking about something and actually doing that something. I’ve been thinking about writing my whole life, and have only actually written during a very short period of it.
A couple of years ago I read the book by Stephen King, called On Writing. A great book, by the way. In that book King asks you to practice writing by imagining a situation taking place in a house, and you have to write the character, yourself I think, out of that situation. Out of the house. I did that, and have started several other stories, including the one on this site, yet have, to date, finished none. So far.
Yes, I wrote in college, and even completed a thesis. Yet, that is not the kind of writing I’m talking about. Writing a thesis or a dissertation is about thinking. I’m talking about the kind of writing that comes from the heart. The kind of writing that moves, touches, and inspires people. Maybe even puts people into action in their life.
Now, I am not insinuating that the book I am now working on will do that. Yet, in the book I am now working on I get to write from both the head and the heart, which is also distinct.
The difference, for me at least, is that I get to let go of the way I normally think, and get in touch with a totally different aspect of myself. Maybe this is a normal experience for those that write often. I would not know. It is, however, an experience that I like quite a bit.
As for writing, I don’t think I like it all that much. Especially the editing process. Difficult. Yet, there is a very real release in writing, which is quite intoxicating. And, it does provide that outlet for the realease of ideas, which I do have many.
For me the distinction on writing from the head and the heart is where you create from – are you creating from that thinking part of yourself, where you are analyzing every aspect of the paper or book to ensure it is reliable and valid. Or, are you writing to write. Writing from the heart, which only really requires that you can stick with it until you have all of the ideas out of you.
Both forms of writing serve a purpose. Both are needed. For me, I have just realized in the last couple of years, that while I do enjoy reading both kinds of books, from the head and the heart, I much more enjoy writing from the heart.