A post for writers – Longhand, or Typed?
Do you do your writing on your computer, or do you write by hand? If you use the computer, there are five reasons you might want to try longhand. Keep reading to see why.
Everybody knows that using the keyboard is ten, if not a hundred times faster. Not only that, but once that manuscript is done, all you have to do spell-check, print, proof, hit that “find” button, and type again until… submit/send. Easy, right? Yes, but it comes with several strong cons.
- Ever typed the last chapter of manuscript and somehow lost it not long after? Wow, what a buzz-kill. It can be agonizing. It’s like doing hours of college work only to get ready to submit it and then, WHAM, it’s gone. Yes, we have auto-save, yes, we have flash-drives, but there are still plenty of times that, even with the above mentioned, we have, and can still lose our work.
- Computer time is time-out/punishment-time for your eyes. Don’t believe me? Ask your eye doctor. Computer light is hard on the eye and will bring on dry-eye like nobodie’s business. It gets worse over the years. Not worth it.
- We type faster, which is actually a disservice, considering the fact that quality work (writing) takes time. You’ve probably heard it said before: it’s easy to just let words spill out of your fingertips without regulating, or really thinking about it, other than what temporarily flashed in your mind for that nano-second. It’s like slathering paint on a newly constructed building without in the fastest time frame possible. Good luck with that paint job.
- It gets boring, after a while. And, it’s like you’re always on the same page. In other words, it’s hard to really see, or feel, your writing progress other than looking at the page number on the bottom of the screen. That’s like using a corn-cob instead of Charmin toilet paper. It gets the job done, but… nowhere near as effectively.
- You can only write with a computer. When inspiration strikes, if you’re not at a computer, you have to hope you have some paper on you, and then transcribe that to the comp later. Because that sounds like a lot of fun, plus, it doesn’t waste any time, at all. 😉
- If you write longhand, you’ll never lose your hard, time-consuming work again. Unless, you know, you do, which should still be much more difficult to do, so, either ways, it’s a win for the masses!
- There is something extremely rewarding from writing your work out by hand and seeing, and feeling, the pages add up, steadily growing thicker and thicker. For all you visual and kinesthetic people.
- Save your eyes from strain and dryness. Think about how much time you spend watching YouTube, the tele, or researching the various things you want to know, plus, possibly, college or school work, and then writing. Yikes. My switching to paper, you spare your eyes from the irritating effects of the white screen, plus strain, too.
- Yes, writing by hand definitely takes longer. But what’s the rush? If you’re striving to push novels out because you want to make money in order to write for a living, remember why you wanted to write for a living in the first place – because you enjoy it. Take the time to really think as your hand forms the letters, and produce quality work, and enjoy and dive deeper into your work. Don’t kill the experience just because you want it done faster. It takes forever to publish a book, anyway. Write what you want, and take your time. Note: yes, it can cause your hand to cramp, so, take breaks. Computers cause carpel tunnel; there’s a surgery to cure that. One is obviously better.
- The beauty of writing on paper is that you can write anywhere, just about whenever. Unless you’re scuba diving. Bored at a redundant work meeting? (hey, we’re not all working our dream jobs), what better way to get in some brainstorming or a few paragraphs by writing it down? Try that with your comp… and it’s a no-go. In other words, it’s less conspicuous, and you never have to get frustrated because you don’t have internet access to google-drive, or because your battery died, or because you can’t find the stupid document. Write it down, and bam, baby, it’s all there in one spot, wherever you go, or put it.
So, you still may decide to write by computer. And that’s fine. But it’s good to at least consider the alternative. If you do decide to give longhand a go, consider keeping your manuscript, (which is usually lengthy,) in a notebook. Personally, I picked out 3 matching (red) 70 page spiral notebooks. If you write front and back, one notebook is 140 pages, two is 280, and three is 420 pages. Plus, for the times when I want to stick some extra pages in the notebook, or even a pen, I can just glue/tape a small, manila envelop inside.
Now, no joke, my eyes are tired. I’m getting off this thing. On to the perks of longhand writing!
As always, happy writing.
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