How Google Ruins Writers

Does the internet help or hurt the creative process?

internetI had an interesting conversation in a small group meeting with other creatives. It got me thinking about how much I rely on Google and the Internet for my writing research.

When I can’t think of a topic, I consult Google.

When I need resources for a post, I list my need in the googler.

When I want inspiration…You get where I’m going.

But here’s the thing. Isn’t there more to writing than regurgitating what we read on the interwebs?

I think we have become a society so dependent on our “virtual connection” with the world that we forget to live in the world. When we live with a Google filter, we forget the God filter, or the nature filter, or the culture filter that is right outside our door.

When we rely on Google for our writing topics or research, we ignore the birds and the breeze, the fresh air and the lively conversation of a sidewalk coffee shop.

When we look to a screen, we miss what is around us–the people and the sights that spark creative stories. Real stories.

When we sit at our computers waiting to be inspired, we miss the inspiration that the real world can give us.

So today, and at least one day each week for the coming months, I resolve to live. To walk in the woods, to drive a new street, to eat alone in a crowded restaurant. I resolve to watch the children play in the park and the teenagers shop in the mall. I will observe the commuters on the train during rush hour and the tourists taking pictures of the sites.

Without my phone.

Without my computer.

With only my eyes and ears, my smell and touch.

I will live first–and then I will write better.

If you want to ponder longer on this subject, check out the book, The Crowd, the Critic and the Muse by Mark Gungor–the book that inspired this conversation in the first place.

I’d love to hear your thoughts! Please share below one thing you will do to become less internet dependent and rely more on observing life to write.

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