If you're wondering what The Impossible Goal is, you can read about it here.
August 8 is getting closer. I'm getting closer as well to the target speed, but only slightly closer. O, had I only six more months! I had a particular thought a while back that no matter how much I'd practice, when it came time, I'd wish I'd practiced more. Well, I guess I feel that to an extent, but I also don't feel that I've slacked off. Even during busy times.
What I'm really feeling, which I feel after EVERY SINGLE speed and/or realtime contest, is "I must shorten my writing even more."
Did I use the Fast & Furious
movies analogy before? Finger speed is like the can of nitrous that Vin Diesel or Paul Whatshisname (Walker?) uses in the races. It's good for short bursts, but you don't wanna be using that stuff all the time or it'll harm your system. (I think. IANACM.)
Short writing is the engine. You want it strong and powerful, and it'll sustain you over long periods of time.
"Briefs make me hesitate!" Then you haven't LEARNED the brief. Me, I tend to hesitate more over multistroke words than with one-stroke words. Briefs and a shorter theory makes each job easier for me. I'm always on the lookout for multistroke words to reduce to one stroke, and I review briefs with my flashcard app.
"I don't have TIIIIIIIIIIIME to learn briefs!" Yes, you do. You just haven't found/won't find it. If you have ten seconds to write out a few briefs on a sticky note and pop that sucker on your steno machine, you have time. If you're watching American Idle (see what I did there) or any television at all (which you're not captioning), you have time. If you're working on supper and you have to let the food simmer for 20 minutes, there's a bit of time. Post a few briefs by the frickin' TOILET ferkryinoutloud!!! If you want your job to be easier, your scoping faster, and your realtime better, you'll find the time to improve your skill. That's what professionals do.
Okay, I just went all Larry Winget on y'all. Sorry about that (kinda). I can't help but feel so strongly about this though, because this past year and a half of speed practice and shortening my writing has made SUCH a difference in work! I have long, exhausting days, sure. However, my feed just gets better and better, the easy jobs are more frequent, and the killer jobs are farther between. That's been my experience.
I sat down to begin this post not really knowing what to write, and this is what happens :)