by Robert L. Gisel
Some while back a good friend of mine pointed out that he never had time to read my longer posts but that he would read the shorter ones. It was his consensus this was so for most of the office crowd. From this sooth and months of experimentation I decided to make some adjustments.
Personally, I tend disfavor toward long posts in the RSS Feeds I subscribe to. Reading a too-long post I will generally be die-hard about it and finish it to end. The next time that author's post comes before me I will relegate it to the "to be read" filing, for some day when I have more time.
Posts of a serious social impact do tend to be longer as these will by necessity get into more specific detail of the who, when and the where, to withstand challenges of the critics. The permalink makes it possible to circumvent this, letting other's articles give the nitty gritty for someone who asks for it.
Writing screenplays I learned to be brief. Say it in the least words and let the action and visuals show the rest, so as to fit within 120 pages, the technical equivalent of 120 minutes. I decided scripts had to have less words and novels had to have more. This isn't necessarily the case.
The last book I ever read of Michener I abandoned after a too-long historical discourse. Hugo used to do this but it was done effectively to embroil the emotions. Any writing should say it with less and prolong the discourse only to intensify the emotional impact and intellectual stimulation.
It has become a fun and fulfilling exercise of mine to invent quotable quotes that exhibit depth of thinking in one or few sentences, as well composing stimulating posts that are one page or less. It's write it, then edit to say it with less words. Your audience is intelligent and suggestive meaning will be perceived out of skilled illustration.
And don't forget this, an author knows. He writes from certainty. Where he knows that from is the fabric of the universe and one's passage through it. If it's real to you now no doubt you lived it before. So write it, and don't hold back.