Bob Caro: Stop thinking with your fingers

Posted on Apr 12, 2019

Heard on Stay Tuned With Preet: Campaign “Spying” & the Ways and Means of Power (with Bob Caro).

Bob Caro at 23:02:

I sometimes use the computer to take notes, but, see, I try to slow myself down. My problem when I was young was I felt I wrote too fast. I didn’t think things through. … I remembered something that happened to me at Princeton. I took a creative writing course with an old, very courtly, soft-spoken southern gentleman – a very famous critic at the time named R.P. Blackman, and I handed in a short story to him (I took his course for two years — every two weeks I handed in a short story, he always said something complimentary). I was always doing these things at the very last minute, you know, an all-nighter. I was always pulling “all-nighters” is what we used to call them. And I thought I was fooling him. And then at our last session he says something nice to me and then he says (this is practically the last thing he said to me), he says, “But you know, Mr. Caro, you’re never going to achieve what you want to achieve if you don’t stop thinking with your fingers.”