Microsoft Word Edit Tracker. BAD.

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I was in a writers group as a kid (okay, okay stop laughing) and we followed a writing principle espoused by Peter Elbow. Basically Mr. Elbow said the best way to write, the best way to break writer’s block, is to write. Stream of consciousness. And if you can’t write for 20 minutes straight, keep writing “I can’t write, I can’t write…”  Something will pop up. Often what pops up is the beginning an idea; perhaps even the logic for an idea.

I just received a lovely piece of writing from a friend about a topic I now I’m going to love – she’s really smart and someone I admire in the brand planning space. But the writing was deliver as a Word file, with “edit tracker” lit up in its full glory. DOH.  Can’t read it. Can’t. I’ll have to force myself.

Edit tracker is the bane of my existence.  Sometimes it pops while I’m writing and I can’t figure out how to turn it off.  I cold reboot, I go to help, click in the tray.  It won’t go away. Sometimes it stays for minutes even scores of minutes. I’ve never been caught doing you-know-what by my mom as a kid, but I’m sure it’s a mood breaker. That’s what tracker is for me.

I’m all for editing, but sometimes in the creative process it’s better to scrap and start over. There’s something to be said for flow.

Lawyers and engineers may need edit tracker, but in the creative and strategy business the function needs to float away on an iceberg. Peace.