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  1. #1
    Senior Member the state i am in's Avatar
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    Default composition for nf types

    i want to learn how nf types go about writing, composing their thoughts, arranging their ideas, and producing mental/creative WORK.


    infp: i've noticed the infps who have learned how to work their strengths to write, especially when working on something that requires more linearity than they would necessary like, do best at writing it all out, printing it, and then literally taking scissors to cut and paste it into a coherent direction. the seeing the whole spatially and then re-composing is crucial.

    infj: as an infj, i have to free-write to explore all of the loose ends and strands of ideas in my head. my skill is in recognizing implications more so than in creating focused arguments. i need to allow my perceptions to wander in order to make the most of my Ni perceptual intelligence, and i need to think of emotional objectives by writing TO someone in order to maximize my voice, i need to rely on those kind of stylistics to create a sense of integrity and consistency throughout the work. which doesn't work in specific forms (formal) writing nearly as well. the free-write process helps me immensely, as does constant outlining and creating maps for thinking in different layers, seeing it all at once perceptually, and attempting to get as much encoded in easy-to-perceive representations so that i can take in as much info when i synthesize as possible.

    enfj?

    enfp?

    i have no idea about how these extroverts work. i know that enfp, when someone is exploring their ideas, realizes their ideas easily into materialization. but they don't recognize the seeds or the relationships until they come up in conversation, or until they are part of the solution to a problem which must be asked first (or they have to be stoned and in a particularly thoughtful/silly/exploratory).

  2. #2
    Feelin' FiNe speculative's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the state i am in View Post
    infp: i've noticed the infps who have learned how to work their strengths to write, especially when working on something that requires more linearity than they would necessary like, do best at writing it all out, printing it, and then literally taking scissors to cut and paste it into a coherent direction. the seeing the whole spatially and then re-composing is crucial.
    This is how I used to write college papers. I started out writing the smaller papers from start to finish, and then as I got into my upper-level courses and then grad school, I took a "chunk" approach. Usually, I would end up with a Word file for each major section or heading, and then one main file that I would paste snippets into, or cut snippets out of. Normally, I would end up with as much "extra" writing as finished, final draft. Sometimes the extra writing was not good enough to include, whereas other times it was good writing but didn't fit tightly with the theme, while still other times it was good writing but would not allow me to fall within the length requirement.

    Writing for Nano, this is also how I do things. I write out of sequence, and when I'm stuck I simply jump into the future of the story (or the past if I'm writing a flashback ) and then resume the main thread when I am inspired once more.

    In the past, when I worked on fantasy novels, I would write from start to finish for the most part, grinding away as the characters made their typical fantasy genre journey from quest point A to quest point B...
    "How can I be, all I want to be,
    When all I want to do is strip away these stilled constraints
    And crush this charade, shred this sad, masquerade"
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  3. #3
    Vaguely Precise Seymour's Avatar
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    Huh, I have a very different approach for writing as an INFP (than the one described by the OP). If what I'm writing isn't too long (clearly this wouldn't work for a novel, for example), I do best if I think about it the background for a while and let it percolate. Sometimes I'll make a few notes on a piece of paper or on the computer, but mostly it's just about letting it gestate internally. I sometimes I'm mentally idly dive into some detail in my head while doing something else, modify it a bit, and then not think about it for a while.

    When I'm ready to write, I can feel the readiness in the back of my mind, and can write it all down in one sitting (or in a few). It flows well the first time, so if I have to make lots of edits, usually it gets a lot worse before it gets better. Otherwise, with the first structural edits the flow from paragraph to paragraph is destroyed, and the nice transitions are lost.

    So, for shorter things, waiting until it's ready is always better. (Yes, I'm a perceiver, can you tell?) I find writing before its time is like pulling teeth for me. Plus I don't have a lot of editing patience, either, especially for something I've just written.

    speculative: Does the ring true for you, now? I haven't attempted a novel, but do you still do chunks as they are ready or interesting? I would imagine with practice one could reduce the percolation time, and develop more patience for editing.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by the state i am in View Post
    infj: as an infj, i have to free-write to explore all of the loose ends and strands of ideas in my head. my skill is in recognizing implications more so than in creating focused arguments. i need to allow my perceptions to wander in order to make the most of my Ni perceptual intelligence, and i need to think of emotional objectives by writing TO someone in order to maximize my voice, i need to rely on those kind of stylistics to create a sense of integrity and consistency throughout the work. which doesn't work in specific forms (formal) writing nearly as well. the free-write process helps me immensely, as does constant outlining and creating maps for thinking in different layers, seeing it all at once perceptually, and attempting to get as much encoded in easy-to-perceive representations so that i can take in as much info when i synthesize as possible.
    What she ^^^ wrote. Usually when I write down my thoughts, there's no real coherent order to them at all. It's not uncommon for me to draw lines trying to show where certain lines of thought are connected or what order they should be in. My mind often just jumps randomly from thought to thought and back again constantly.

  5. #5
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    I agree with what the OP said about the INFJ.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peguy View Post
    What she ^^^ wrote. Usually when I write down my thoughts, there's no real coherent order to them at all. It's not uncommon for me to draw lines trying to show where certain lines of thought are connected or what order they should be in. My mind often just jumps randomly from thought to thought and back again constantly.
    And +1000000000 to this as well. I'm awful with coherence and different ideas run through my head like crazy. With formal papers, I use outlining but not in a strict manner, I can make adjustments when I come up with an idea that leads me to a different direction and I have to shift the focus on something else, much better in my mind. I write much more freely on a subject that I can sort of put myself into, when I can establish some kind of emotional attachment to it.

    I have to write things down very quickly or the train of thought is lost. When I used to write everything by hand, I numbered or drew lines between chunks of text. Using a computer helps me immensely. I usually write chunks of text, following a thought, then start another thought, or use different colouring for different thoughts. I highlight the ideas that need to be fleshed out more. Then I can easily connect these chunks of text into a "finished product".

  6. #6
    Senior Member The Outsider's Avatar
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    I sit around and think it through in my head, then put it on paper.

  7. #7
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    I am not good with formal papers unless I have had a lot of time to allow thought to crystallize into coherent sections. My main problem in writing is rabbit trailing and sorting out the extraneous from the essential. I need a person who is more ruthless than I to help me come up with an outline. Strangely enough, when teaching or helping someone else, I am much better at doing this. I can read the assignment's guidelines, come up with something quickly and be quite decisive. I wish this ability could be transferred to my own writing! I tend to get overwhelmed by all I want to say and turn it into a much bigger job than it is.

  8. #8
    Sugar Hiccup OrangeAppled's Avatar
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    I think a lot first. I do some research. I research everything. Even my friendly emails . I often don't trust my own thoughts - I have to connect them to something that is verifiably real. I recognize I am in lala land 90% of the time.

    I have weird self-imposed restrictions, such as not to overuse the same word. Instead, I overuse the thesaurus . I also try and vary sentence structure. I see writing almost visually, and each component is an element that needs to balance something else. It can't feel too repetitive so that it is redundant, but it also needs some repetition in phrasing to help tie it all together.

    For formal papers, outlines do help me organize my thoughts and cut out tangent material (which is a big trap for me). Editing is probably the biggest issue for me - I tend to add for clarity, not cut.

    I don't usually write in sequence. Even if I attempt to, I tend to jump to different parts, so when I am done getting my thoughts out, I have to go back and arrange it into a more linear format. I don't literally cut and paste paper, but I cut and paste on my computer. Once I get it in order, I go through and make sure there are connecting sentences.

    When I was younger and my ISFJ mom would review my work for me, and that was always her complaint: "You jump from one thought to another without clearly connecting them". My mind makes the connection, it fills in blanks, so I naturally assume other people would do the same. I've realized in observing other writing that you have to spell it out for people, and now I can do that well when necessary.

    When I write by hand, I tend to write a "rough draft" first, and then I re-write it in order. Even when I write thank you cards or something like that, I usually do a trial run on plain paper first.
    Often a star was waiting for you to notice it. A wave rolled toward you out of the distant past, or as you walked under an open window, a violin yielded itself to your hearing. All this was mission. But could you accomplish it? (Rilke)

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  9. #9
    Blah Orangey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeAppled View Post
    I think a lot first. I do some research. I research everything. Even my friendly emails . I often don't trust my own thoughts - I have to connect them to something that is verifiably real. I recognize I am in lala land 90% of the time.

    I have weird self-imposed restrictions, such as not to overuse the same word. Instead, I overuse the thesaurus . I also try and vary sentence structure. I see writing almost visually, and each component is an element that needs to balance something else. It can't feel too repetitive so that it is redundant, but it also needs some repetition in phrasing to help tie it all together.

    For formal papers, outlines do help me organize my thoughts and cut out tangent material (which is a big trap for me). Editing is probably the biggest issue for me - I tend to add for clarity, not cut.
    I relate to this a lot. Sentence structure needs to vary in such a way that there is a pleasing balance and "ring" to it. And I hate being repetitive (either in terms of words choice, structure of the sentence, or content). The only thing different for me is that I usually use mapping instead of outlining (it's more visual), and once I have that all down I usually write straight through. There's something about not having an organizing introduction that makes writing anything else beyond that almost impossible for me.

    I absolutely do not do the free write and subsequent "cut and paste" method, though, and I usually edit my sentences heavily as I write them so that later editing is not really necessary. But I'm an NT, so what does it matter?
    Artes, Scientia, Veritasiness

  10. #10
    4x9 cascadeco's Avatar
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    When writing for personal pleasure, or to figure out my thoughts on a particular matter, I relate very much to the free-writing described in the OP. It's only post-school (past 10 years) that I've done this sort of writing, however.

    While in school, when writing papers, I would spend the majority of my time thinking through everything in my head - that took up the bulk of the process. Once I actually began writing, it went much more quickly as I already knew generally what I was wanting to do and the format. It was still consuming in the sense that I was having to find quotes/sources to support my theme, but seamless/effortless in the sense that I had already established the 'roadmap' in my mind. Also I remember having a thing where I did my editing and such as I went, so that my first draft was for the most part my final draft - obviously a few changes might be needed in the end, but generally the 'draft' concept didn't apply much to me.
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