Wanting to speed up my transcribing practice, I recently tried doing away with that extra step of looking from the text to my own pen; I just read while letting my hand “follow” the outlines on a separate page off to the side.
It was certainly speedy. But I was surprised to also find how well-formed my outlines were (compared only to my own usual work, of course), and that some of the stylistic mistakes I’d been working out just disappeared.
Since this, I’ve noticed that in general, keeping my eyes a distance from what my pen is doing speeds me up—as though my outline-imagination was lighter without the anchor of the pen.
In speed reading methods, there is a similar effect. By “reading” slightly above the letters themselves, broader patterns can be taken in, boosting intake rate. Model artists recommend drawing without taking your eyes away from the subject as a way to break bad mental editing habits, and, I suppose, build up the direct connection between your imagination and your motor faculties themselves.
Is this a common or well-understood effect? Has it been applied to a study method?