Write Something Each Day

My writing skills really suffered over the past two decades. I like to blame it on working for the government, but it is really my own fault. I admit that I took the easy way out by writing in the style the bosses expect. Mostly passive voice and repetition of information are the two main things that I see myself doing when I sit down to write fiction. These are odd things to do, but it gets the job done at work.

Early on in my career with the government I was forceful and energetic in my writing. However the bosses up the line were for the most part timid indecisive people that recoiled at any kind of exuberance. They didn’t want to make decisions, and people that brought attention to any issue whatsoever were working counter to that goal. Most of the time the only feedback I got was that boss-so-n-so didn’t like the presentation. There was rarely any comment on the content of the presentation, just on the presentation itself. It didn’t take long for me to figure this out. I remember sitting and rewriting a proposal so that it was in the passive voice. It was well received. I waited and waited for a decision on the content. I realized that I needed to be persistent. I wrote the proposal again. This time I found at least two, and sometimes three, different ways to say the same thing. Again I was thanked for the proposal, yet this time (after another long wait) the boss-so-n-so actually mentioned the topic at a meeting and eventually the ball started rolling as a “perhaps somebody should look into this” non-decision decision. My immediate boss took this as full approval and we did the project. Nothing was ever said by boss-so-n-so. He didn’t have to make an official decision and something still got done.

Needless to say have become the master of the repetitive style of passive information sharing. I mean I am able to fire off a proposal that would not scare the high up bosses, and yet mention the topic enough times that it would start to take hold. People have come to me to polish up their proposals by finding different ways to share that information with passive bosses in such a way that said bosses would actually read the document which just so happens has the side effect that some information might sink into their minds. This paragraph is a good example of the style I am talking about.

I hate it!!!

But I have been doing it so long that it has become they style that flows out of my mind. I even find myself talking this way from time to time. You see, I also learned that at meetings and teleconferences that if you speak this way to the passive “never met a decision they couldn’t ignore” bosses, sometimes they actually hear something.


I have decided that I need to break this style habit. From this day forward I am going to write each day. Some days will only be a blog entry. My goal is to write fiction; however, no matter what I write (except for work) I am going to make sure that I avoid the passive repetitive style.

Wish me luck, eh?


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