one unintimidating chunk

The title refers to an incident when Anne was a child. Her brother had waited until the night before a school project on birds was due to start work on it. He sat at the kitchen table, with a blank pad of paper and a pile of bird books, overcome by the immensity of the task. His father sat down, put his arm around him and said, "Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird." This has become Lamott's way of tricking herself into writing. She tells herself that she's only required to write a small amount each day, just one "bird." No matter how busy, how distracted, how depressed, how uninspired, surely there's time enough for one measly paragraph or character description or scene outline? Of course, once you sit down to bang out that one small block of text, you end up producing two or three or more. But you always tell yourself you're gonna take it one unintimidating chunk at a time: bird by bird.
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