Great writing does not come spontaneously.
It just doesn’t.
Sure, one can sit down and write something “great” in 10 minutes.
But is it really 10 minutes?
Or is it school from the time you were 5, and 10 years of literary practice?
Everyone loves to point out genius.
Few like to point out hard work.
And 6 years editing a book?! Wow.
Young aspiring writers like to point to Jack Kerouac, who supposedly wrote On the Road in a three-week drug-fueled blitz. What they leave out is the six years he spent editing and refining it until it was finally ready. As one Kerouac scholar told NPR on the book’s fiftieth anniversary, “Kerouac cultivated this myth that he was this spontaneous prose man, and that everything that he ever put down was never changed, and that’s not true. He was really a supreme craftsman, and devoted to writing and the writing process.”
-Ryan Holiday, Perennial Seller