We learn to write by copying down the alphabet. You ingrained those shapes into your mind by copying them down thousands of times — now you can write them out effortlessly. Musicians learn to play by copying songs. Artists learn to draw by reproducing the greats.

Copying the work of a master ingrains it in your mind. As Raymond Chandler put it, “when you have to use your energy to put those words down, you are more apt to make them count.” When Steven Pressfield was just starting out he would type out pages of Hemingway just to ingrain his style, tone, and voice into his mind.

If you want to learn something, starting with copying is usually a pretty good place. To get good try to ingrain the work of the greats into your mind.

What do you want to learn? And who do you want to copy?


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