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The Mindful Writer

So you want to be a writer? According to popular mythology, all you need to do is hole up for a weekend or three, drink copious amounts of coffee and/or smoke a lot of cigarettes and put pen to paper. Words of genius will instantly pour out of you. After that comes The Auction, which will make you rich, and The Film Deal, which will make you famous. For impatient binge writers, there is plenty of advice out there, from writing a novel in a month (NaNoWriMo) to producing a book in a weekend.

But what about the pain and pleasure of writing itself? Or the pure love of invention? And the way that writing, like meditation, can help you find your personal equilibrium? Writing is in many ways the ultimate mindful occupation and recording your thoughts regularly can help transform your life. You don’t have to be a Buddhist to reap the rewards. The essential point is that each day you check in with your work, and each day you learn something from it. Writers have been talking about this for d…

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