Super Cities №165 — Write More, Challenge More, Fear Less

Brendan Hart

One Big Thing

“Evaluate accurately, not kindly” — Ray Dalio

This is my 165th Maze / Super Cities essay.

One hundred sixty-four of them have been too heavily self-edited.

The strange thing about my public writing is that, although it is short, informal, and real-time, every essay is deeply personal. Not because of the topic — I don’t care about scooters; I care about what they represent — but because of the content.

It is mine and mine alone.

Here’s my writing process, which is not much of a process:

  • I read an article that triggers a Super Cities-related thought
  • I spend a few minutes organizing a thread in my head
  • I write a rough draft
  • Then I edit for style
  • Then I edit for offense

This last point is the one that needs to change. I need to stop editing for offense.

The problem with editing for offense is that it makes my writing dull and, importantly, less insightful. The best writing is truthfully and powerfully precise.

I hope millions of people read Super Cities.

But, if I’m honest, I’d rather half that number love Super Cities than double that number like Super Cities.

Super Cities — or my style, or my focus, or many other things — is not for everyone. That’s okay.

So in 2019, my writing will be more precise. It will be sharper. It will be more constructively confrontational. It will, at times, be less agreeable.

I will continue to edit for clarity, but I will no longer edit for offense. There’s too much to say; too much to do; and too much at stake.

If there is a topic that you want me to take on, send it my way.

Let’s go.

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