You have to go with your gut when it comes to writing.

This coming Friday’s comic took about 3 hours to get down. We went through draft after draft, trying to write something that worked. It didn’t help that we ended up abandoning our usual writing spot mid way through, due to screaming kids and the restaurant’s radio going wild with the volume. Eventually we reassembled at a different location that was more chill, and we set back to work.

Still, nothing came up. We’d come up with something, and Pedro would axe it, and while I wasn’t completely sold on what we wrote down either,I didn’t go with my gut right away, which dragged things out. It was that night that hammered in that whole “go with your gut” thing.

We eventually started nailing what we wanted to do, and man, when the pieces start falling into place, it is awesome.  It’s like getting the right blocks one after another in Tetris: What seemed like a lofty task suddenly becomes manageable, and from there you start to see the makings of a finished product. There’s no greater feel in the world than watching something come together after hours of work.


Above: what it’s like pulling through in a difficult writing session.

You gotta go with your gut when doing creative work, to ignore that feeling is to ignore what you really meant to say. Trying to analyze something for more then ten seconds means your just trying to convince yourself that what you wrote is good, when in fact it probably isn’t, and you could do a lot better.

There’s something else to note here as well, and that is the idea of punching, which means that you hammer out the kinks in your writing. Maybe you went with your gut on some dialog, but is it good enough? You can get the right feel for a joke, but you also have to refine it into something you can put out there.  Use your gut to get you to where you need to be, then you can start analyzing what you just created.

It’s also important to listen to your writing partner’s gut as well (You don’t have a writing partner? Get one, they’re awesome to have around). You and your partner need to be on the same page, and making sure your guts are synched together on ideas will lead to far better results than if you simply relent on an idea or go with theirs when you don’t like it.  When I write with Pedro, it helps that he’s able to stop a lot of things that would probably end up being pretty bad. This comic can’t exist with just me writing it, and man, there are a lot of things I have wanted to go with that would have been wildly inconsistent with the comic as it exist now. Thankfully Pedro’s around to check my gut when it needs checking.

I think that’s about all for now. Thanks for coming to our little corner of the web, and we’ll see you back on Friday! To those wondering: Yes, I used the word gut a lot on purpose.

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