There is Nothing to Writing
There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.
Hemingway, while putting it frankly, certainly has it right. There is no magic way to do something—you just do. But that doesn’t always translate well in our minds. We will expend our energy in finding shortcuts to something before pursuing it instead of just diving in head first. It makes the undertaking appear more accessible. However, we mustn’t forget that 99.99% of the work still remains even after “eliminating” shortcuts.
When I embark on new endeavors, I often joke to myself on how I’ll just “YouTube or Wikipedia it” to learn the material. It’s usually my ironic way of mentally preparing for the arduous journey of going down a rabbit hole. But think about it: wouldn’t it be great if we could just rapidly acquire skill and knowledge, like they do in The Matrix, without actually doing work? Imagine the time and energy it’d save!
As of the year 2012, mastery, and even competency, of a craft requires thousands of hours of labor so there’s no getting around that. Shortcuts obviously make the learning easier, but be wary: do not misplace your objective of getting good at a craft with solely finding shortcuts. Instead, shortcuts ought to be treated as instruments of insight that you find during your journey. They only become problematic when they destroy, corrupt, or leave out nuggets of understanding and intuition. Because when they do, you’ll be spending unncessary time holing up gaps of understanding where your “shortcuts” unearthed in the first place.
All you have to do is to just sit down with your craft and bleed.