grokking hard

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My father is a ...

Posted at — 2013-Sep-22

I found this on an anwer on Quora:

My father is a writer. A good one. His name is Marc Norman.

He wrote Shakespeare In Love and a hundred other scripts and novels and has two oscars on his mantle.

He told me this about writing…

It’s a full time job. To be successful you must be disciplined. You do it from nine to five, five days a week. Focus on your work for forty hours and put it away at night and on the weekends. When you’re blocked write something else, sonnets, poems, the “other novel”, love letters. The point is you must write full-time. A writer’s talent is a muscle that must be worked out, and like a bicep it will strengthen with use.

Writers write alone, in quiet. Writers don’t write in coffee-shops. Silence is the blank canvas onto which the world of the work is drawn.


Revisiting this post again, I realized that the principle in the quoted answer could be applied to any profession, specifically software development. As a software developer myself, I believe in the value of continuously (and deliberately) practicing.

Any skill, I think, must be kept sharp regularly. A writer who does not write often will not create good story. A martial artist neglecting practice will become slow. Likewise, a software developer needs to practice to make sure he/she can build good softwares.