The Value of Forgetting (For Writers)

A Writer's Path

by Richard Risemberg

A good memory is both blessing and curse to a novelist. As with all two-edged weapons, you have to wield it with caution, lest you damage your own self…or in the authorial case, your story.

When you’re battling through that first draft, it is indeed a blessing: it helps you keep the plot tight and the characters consistent. A good memory gives you a world you can step into and live in along with your characters, and watch them build the story as you record it. You are a participant observer in a fully realized world that lives, in fact, only in your memory, after all.

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