Although every writer dreams of getting it right on the first pass, very few succeed. Writing is craft and, like all craft, proceeds by stages: conception, material selection, rough shaping, detailed shaping, sanding and finishing. (That’s for writing nonfiction, which feels like woodworking to me. Writing fiction is more like throwing clay, and writing poetry more like watchmaking.)
— Richard Rhodes, from “Beware of that Voice in Your Head” in today’s Wall Street Journal.