Is there anyone out there an old fashioned writer still using pen and paper? I am one of the few who still does as I don’t trust technology 100%. I am writing this article on my third laptop, sixth computer out of all I have owned, because devices like these are not meant to last very long. I have seen books older than me that are still in excellent condition. But there’s nothing wrong with using a computer, laptop, tablet or phone to write, but I highly recommend you have back up of your work on an external hard drive and/or disc just in case your device gets stolen, lost or crashes.
My ultimate writing tools consist of a Dr. Grip pen (my favorite) and one of the many notebooks in every corner of my apartment. There’s something magical when the ink flows smoothly on that fresh white paper, and the right pen is most important according to Natalie Goldberg in her book, Writing Down the Bones, where she explains “It should be a fast writing pen because your thoughts are always much faster than your hand” (5). You want the pen to feel comfortable in your hand and I prefer those with a larger body and grip with a smooth gel ink. These usually have re-fillable cartridges so you don’t have to keep spending money on new pens.
I am definitely a notebook junkie, because every school supply season I end up buying 3 or 4 college-rule notebooks for my collection – and why not? They are much cheaper during that time anyway. And don’t limit your selection; buy them in various sizes and colors to keep in your pocket or purse. A writer will often get thoughts at the most inopportune times, so we must always be prepared. I keep one in every room and even take them with me to a doctor’s offices, at work to use during breaks, or anywhere else I know I will have a long wait. Writing in a notebook before bed also helps to calm my mind of those thoughts that usually keep me up at night.
One final thought – many of us who write often suffer with insomnia, as our brains are working overtime with all the ways we need to express ourselves. Using all these electronic devices are to blame as many studies show the lighting stimulates our minds making it harder to fall asleep. So the old fashion writing tools can have some advantage in this high tech world.
What are some of your favorite writing tools – old and new? Let us know in the comments.
Work Cited: Goldberg, Natalie. 1986. Writing Down the Bones. 2nd Ed. London: Shambala Publications.
About the Author
Donna is a freelance writer and blogger in West Palm Beach, FL. She is the author of Ataraxia, Cardboard Signs, Devour Me and Charcoal Kisses.
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