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“Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.” ~ Ray Bradbury

Dr. Tanya continues her Blogging Insights series by asking what we think of the above quote, with respect to blogging. I have to admit that I often respond to Blogging Insights with answers that relate to my “real” writing as opposed to blog posts. Granted, I sometimes post flash fiction and poetry here, which counts as real writing, but I don’t consider replies to questions or noodling about life in general to be on that level. That’s just chitchat. This post is chitchat. I don’t plan chitchat, nor do I have an end goal in mind. It’s just rambling. So, in that sense, I guess I’m writing from intuition, if we are contrasting that kind of writing with outlining a story, though this doesn’t really make much sense to me.

To me, intuition comes into play when we’re making snap decisions. Can I trust this person or not? Will I have more fun at the party or the concert? What should I order for dessert? Those are all in the “feeling” range of mind work, rather than the logical side, which helps me do math, play games, understand plots, etc. Yet even so, feelings come from somewhere, and I believe they are generated from a range of prior experiences. As an adult, I don’t think any of my mind is a “blank slate.” Every bit of it has some scribbled notes from a thing that has already happened, or hasn’t happened, as the case may be. This is what helps me to decide instantly to order cheesecake rather than banana cream pie ~ I already know cheesecake is delicious and BCP is icky because of prior experience. Perhaps “intuition” is simply faster logic.

When I consider the writing process, every word I put down is coming from my left brain. Whether we are talking about sentence structure, spelling, or thoughts themselves, it simply does not compute that these activities spill directly from my right brain. Ideas may originate in the bubbling vat of feelings, but they have to be translated into words via the logical side of my mind (and a quick google search confirms that language is a left brain function). Even now, I’m editing what I’ve previously typed right here in this post, in order to make sure my thoughts are presented accurately.

Perhaps what Bradbury is saying is a NaNoWriMo type of concept: just fill the page with some garbage already so that you have something to edit. There’s nothing more frustrating than endlessly staring at the blank screen because you haven’t thought of the perfect way to begin your story. Start anywhere and fix it later. Of course, Bradbury edited his work; every writer does ~ it’s the main part of writing. So I’m not sure what he means by intuition, other than just get going.

©️2022 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted.

18 responses to “Intuition

  1. The quote seems to imply that intuition is providing a steady stream of ideas just waiting to be released and I don’t think that’s happening in my head.

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  2. I sometimes worry that I’m writing about stuff no one cares about. Especially when I write about autism or all of my health things. My intuition tells me that there may be one person out there who needs to read my ramblings so they know they’re not the only person dealing with whatever.
    I’ve found random posts that helped me! Especially when Ben was little and we were so clueless.

    Other than my gut instinct to overshare, I don’t really understand where intuition would come into play with writing a poem or story. I like Bradbury though🤷🏼‍♀️😂

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  3. Feelings have to come from somewhere and your ideas may originate in the bubbling vat of feelings. I found this to be very profound, Paula.

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  4. Interesting about language being left-brain.

    I don’t feel that I’m a terribly intuitive person (I certainly don’t trust my intuitions at all), but I feel I’m quite an intuitive writer. I’m not a ‘pantser’ — I plan my stories out, write character breakdowns and so on, but when I’m writing, stuck for what I need to write to get from point A to point B, I often find that something pops into my head that I write because I need to write something… and then I realise it fits wonderfully with character or theme, without having planned it at all! I don’t know where this comes from and it fascinates me. No wonder the ancients thought there were spiritual beings inspiring them.

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  5. Very well analyzed

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  6. I haven’t done nearly the amount of writing you have, but for me intuition works like this: I develop character profiles that I want to use. and set up an opening fcene with end goal in mind. Then put the characters in the scenes and let intuition take over to guide interaction.

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  7. Those are really good explanations of intuition and feelings.
    I love the graphic.
    Did you colour it yourself Paula?

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