This week I wrote about all the ways in which

It was a piece written in an intuitive way, in that I knew that for the story to get at the truth of what I was experiencing, and how it related to what (without sounding pompous) the world at large was going through – I had to step away and not think too hard about what I was writing. One of the great privileges of writing for a living is that the medium of writing itself starts to shift and transform with every topic, it loses its formulaic shape and moulds to the subject matter.

And so I stepped back, and while it was deeply uncomfortable at times to be led by instinct and intuition rather than a planned series of notes and points that I wanted to hit, the process brought me closer to some essential truth that I would not have been able to reach on my own.

One of the difficulties in trying to isolate these original thoughts and amplify them in your head is that we are (or I am at least), constantly consuming information. There are timelines to scroll, podcasts to chatter in our ears as we exercise or shop, radios that hum in the background at home, music to fill the silence and lift us when we are down, and then infinite choices of what we can watch on any device we wish. I have immersed myself even more in all this content since the lockdown started, since our social and professional lives shrank suddenly and dramatically. But as time went by I have found the volume of content consumed increasingly alarming, in that it served to numb, rather than stimulate.

A few years ago, the American writer Ta-Nehisi Coates walked away from his Twitter account without warning. When he was asked why he turned his back on such an important networking tool he said "to control what is coming out, I have to control what is going in". The knowledge sources we have, although we feel like we have free will, offer a limited supply of a mostly similar knowledge diet.

I am grateful that The Correspondent provides a thinking environment where you are encouraged to hear your voice through the noise. I hope, dear reader, that you feel the same. If you do, please with us this month as we celebrate one year of publishing!

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