Wikipedia:Articles must be written
|This essay contains the advice or opinions of one or more Wikipedia contributors. Essays may represent widespread norms or minority viewpoints. Consider these views with discretion. Essays are not Wikipedia policies or guidelines.|
Articles must be written. What this means is that before articles are linked, expanded, edited, sourced, amended, linked to, talked about, or disputed, they must - first, middle and last - be written by someone.
If the original writing has any value at all, all subsequent edits therefore must add to the value of the article, and it is by adding, not subtracting, that things develop (hence deletionism is counter-developmental).
In order for one person to write a paper, they must first get their concepts in order - an outline helps to organize which concepts are most relevant and in what order. Wiki growth is often not quite as organized, and we must consider ideas such as basic concept outlines as necessary - not only when individuals write papers, but more so when many people work together on an article. Now that English Wikipedia articles are approaching the concept limit - the total number of actual discrete concepts in the world - we must give greater value to writing, and the way in which we organize articles together to achieve cohesive topical coverage.
It may help to list our current weaknesses. Often we see articles that aren't sufficiently cross-linked with related articles. At times we have seen good writing be replaced with inferior writing.