In Peter Elbow’s essay “Freewriting”, the author teaches the reader that freewriting is the simplest method to start writing an essay. Elbow elaborates this idea by telling the reader to continue writing without stopping for an extended amount of time and speed is not necessarily the goal although he states it “Revs you up”. He urges “The only point is to keep writing” and the reader will produce better work then to begin with, “The goal of free writing is the process, not the product” and goes on to give us an example from an experienced writer in a college group. The author presents benefits of freewriting and lists a plethora of pro’s on the subject. Freewriting can help through the difficulties faced in writing, it separates the editing process from the writing process, freewriting may interest you in writing and shows you how write without thinking about it. He points out freewriting is “a useful outlet”, it can help you come up with subjects and brings the author into cognitive syntactical state of watchful writing. Elbow comments that freewriting can help you succeed in the “long run” instead of the “short run”, he claims added pressure can cripple the writing process and you won’t learn to control your writing. He also explains “if reading over your freewriting or giving it to someone else gets in the way of future writing” Elbow states to just trash or hide papers, Elbow tells us he trashes his work.
Elbow concludes his essay with a metaphorical idea on the “myth” of freewriting and how a piece is plaguing him, so the author finds one must overcome a “resistance” within freewriting; almost like defeating a creature without slaying it completely. He delivers two examples of a freewriter, one soft and one hard and seeks to imply one must find a middle ground within write or both are helpless. He favors the hard writer, explaining that “the goal of freewriting” is to find a middle ground within both writers “the clay will fight you a bit in your hands as you try to work it into a bowl. But that bowl will end up more alive and powerful”.
I enjoyed Peter Elbow’s essay on