418: Writing

A Thousand Things to Talk About
A Thousand Things to Talk About
418: Writing

What do you most often write?

Show notes and links:
The Atlantic
Business Insider

Full episode script

Written communications has become the king of the land — or at the very least, is becoming.. While Leonard Shlain’s book The Alphabet vs the Goddess argues that this change has accompanied a shift towards a more patriarchal society, there’s no arguing that text as a form of communication and thought is here to stay.

Sure, handwritten letters may be going a bit more out of style, but text-first communication is the norm more than anything else, and the skill of writing is one that is difficult to operate in the world without.

One service called the Social Skinny estimates that Every 60 seconds on Facebook: 510,000 comments are posted, 293,000 statuses are updated. That’s a lot of words, and social media is far from the only thing we write.

One report in 2013 estimated that the average worker writes about 41,000 words per year in just email. That’s slightly more words than the Great Gatsby or the Old Man in the Sea.

And that’s not even considering chat, messenger, or the old standby text messages. Way back in 2013, one estimate was that most people send around 30 to 70 text messages per day. Assuming even just a few words per message, that’s a lot of text – based communication.

And all of this is before you even think about challenges like National Novel Writing Month, which challenges writers to compose a minimum of 1,667 words per day to finish a 50,000 word novel in a month.

No matter how you slice it, writing is something most people do a lot of every day. So what do you most often write?

This script may vary from the actual episode transcript.