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Sean D. Schaffer
01-22-2007, 09:18 AM
I was just curious:

What writing instrument do you prefer most? What do you use to do your writing on?


For me, I presently use a Smith-Corona Coronamatic typewriter. I'm hoping to get a vintage Underwood No. 6 before too long, because I find they're the most reliable typewriter I've ever used.

I am not fond of computer keyboards too much, because you can't really bang on them like you can with a manual typewriter. In fact, this little tid-bit is why I'm planning on getting the Underwood. I don't like resting my fingers for a moment and finding a newly typed letter on my page because I barely tapped the key.


Anyway, that's my prefered writing instrument. What's yours?

Medievalist
01-22-2007, 09:24 AM
Macintosh or a notebook and a Namiki retractable point fountain pen, sometimes a mechanical pencil, if I'm translating and need to erase.

benbradley
01-22-2007, 09:46 AM
I've seen two-dollar IBM Selectrics at thrift stores that look tempting, especially knowing what they originally cost. But I recall that those things make NOISE. I've got too much junk, but I'd still like to have one for a novelty/history item and occasional actual use.

I have several IBM PS/2 keyboards, with the slanted IBM logo in the oval on the left side above the ESC and F1 keys. These are known as the "Model M" keyboards (google Model M), and they're known for their robustness, as well as the clicking sound each key makes when you press and release it. I can testify it takes a lot of bread and cookie crumbs and spilled coffee to make it not work, and even then it can be cleaned out. It's much like the original IBM PC, XC and AT keyboards, but those older ones, especially the AT, make louder clicking noises. These keyboards are still in use at the teller windows at a lot of banks. Sometimes you can still find Model M's among all the "modern" lightweight cheapie keyboards in thrift stores, or pay some real money and order one online.

Tiger
01-22-2007, 09:46 AM
Macintosh or a notebook and a Namiki retractable point fountain pen, sometimes a mechanical pencil, if I'm translating and need to erase.

I love my little Vanishing Point. I also have my good old MB 149 (grad present). I also restored a circa 1927 portable Underwood.

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 10:32 AM
What a wonderful thread! Finally, no one will complain if the thread wanders off into complaining about computer features and longing for typewriters. :)

These days, I use a desktop and a laptop computer, because that's what I've got. I also have notepads of all sapes and sizes -- from legal pads, to leather journals, to college ruled spiral notebooks -- and a collection of nice (read: hardworking, not fancy) pens which I love writing with. I can float between methods, depending on what I've got on hand.

These days, I set my laptop up in my closet-office, and I have it in front of me. To my right, I have a sturdy desktop keyboard that I use when I write, because I can hammer on it safely, which I can't do on the laptop.

I miss typewriters. I loved my electric typewriter, whatever brand it was.

I still think a fountain pen is the best method, if you have the time for it, which I don't always... :)

BottomlessCup
01-22-2007, 10:43 AM
Bic medium-point black ballpoint pen.
Mead Five-Star steno notebook.

Always.

You can't go fast with fancy pens (especially those ones with the little needly point.)

I can't compose on a computer. The ability to delete ruins it. I need to strike out. I need to scribble random notes in the margin. I need my pinkie to get dirty. And when I write for four hours, I want to have something.

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 10:48 AM
Bic medium-point black ballpoint pen.
Mead Five-Star steno notebook.

Always.

You can't go fast with fancy pens (especially those ones with the little needly point.)

I can't compose on a computer. The ability to delete ruins it. I need to strike out. I need to scribble random notes in the margin. I need my pinkie to get dirty. And when I write for four hours, I want to have something.

This is the exact allure that keeps me writing in notebooks. That, and it's too easy to just run on and on if you're writing on computers. Computer writing is a necessary evil for me, most of the time.

I disagree about pointy-tipped bens, though. I use the Pilot Precise V5 pens (http://www.attemptednovelist.com/images/3.jpg)

And, barring those, I have a lovely fountain pen. It cost me eight bucks, it's weighted comfortably, and I abuse the hell out of it.

I like tipped pens, and fountain pens, because I don't have to press so much against the paper, and it helps my hand. That said, I'll write with any kind of pen. I'm not picky. I'll paint stories on cave walls, if I have to.

jbal
01-22-2007, 10:51 AM
I just wrote something out longhand for the first time. It took forever, and then I still had to type it into the computer which took hours. Then I thought about editing a bit as I typed it in, because I had a hard copy of the first draft anyway, but it's easier just editing it on the computer, so I didn't even do that.

Nicole_Gestalt
01-22-2007, 12:00 PM
I find I do most of my writing on a computer, but when I'm away from the computer I have notepads that I love to writ in. Because of an issue I have with my eyes I can't use ink that blue or black, so I use gel pens or marble pens (which has ink in many colours througout the actual pen) and i find these work well for me.

I do dislike the fact then that once i've written it out I have to then type it all up again but I enjoy the freedom of writing in a pad gives me plus I feel more professional for some reason!

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 12:02 PM
I do dislike the fact then that once i've written it out I have to then type it all up again but I enjoy the freedom of writing in a pad gives me plus I feel more professional for some reason!

The useful thing about typing it up is, you can make changes and edits as you're typing it in, essentially making the first typed version a second draft of your story.

I do that. It works pretty well, most of the time.

Nicole_Gestalt
01-22-2007, 12:05 PM
The useful thing about typing it up is, you can make changes and edits as you're typing it in, essentially making the first typed version a second draft of your story..

Thats true, I found that with one of the pieces i'm working on now. However I also find that I have actually written a lot less then I think I have if I do it hand written first - but then thats just because I feel like I've written loads when in actuality its only been a few pages typed. I guess there's advantages and disadvantages for both.

Mandy-Jane
01-22-2007, 01:49 PM
I wrote one of my first ever short stories on a manual portable typewriter, sitting on the edge of my bed, with the typewriter on my knee! It nearly fell off dozens of times, but it was all I had at the time.

Now I use my computer. I find it very hard to write on paper. My handwriting gets all messy and I get lazy and start using abbreviations which I later totally forget what they mean.

I get amazed when I see photos of old manuscripts of writers like Jane Austen, with everything so neatly written. Even the bits crossed out are neat. I don't think I would have coped back then.

tjwriter
01-22-2007, 03:00 PM
Computers are handy, and so easy to use, but my brain just works better most of the time if I sit with a pad and a pen. Lately I've been investing in the cheap notebooks around back-to-school time. As long as it's college ruled, I'm good.

Of course we all know now that writers always seem to have a bit of an office supply fetish. I remember the question once a long time ago and the response was overwhelming.

I don't have a favorite pen. As long as it lets me write quickly without destroying my penmanship, I'm happy.

DragonHeart
01-22-2007, 06:04 PM
I prefer my computer.

I have a hard time writing anything longhand in pen or sometimes even pencil - being lefthanded means I have a tendency to smear ink/graphite all over the page. Pen is out of the question for this reason, as it will make the page unreadable. I do have good handwriting, but the most I'll write anything longhand is outlining or keeping a pad handy for notes while typing on the computer.

I've also found that when I get in "the zone" and everything just clicks, I can barely keep up typing, never mind trying to scrawl across a page as fast as possible without degenerating to chicken scrath.

My earliest memories of writing involve our old typewriter (my father probably still has the thing), so it's no surprise that I favor keyboards over notebooks.

~DragonHeart~

PattiTheWicked
01-22-2007, 06:25 PM
I prefer to do my writing on the computer, simply because I can type nearly as fast as I think -- when I'm writing by hand, my hand can't keep up with my brain.

On the other hand, I do love journaling and I do that all by hand, in a leather-bound notebook with an inky blue pen.

Bubastes
01-22-2007, 06:30 PM
My MacBook (my preferred tool because I think faster than I can handwrite).

Cheap spiral notebooks, college ruled (I like the 5"x7" ones because I can toss them in my purse. Great for first drafts when I don't have my MacBook handy).

Paper-Mate ballpoint pens, medium point, blue ink (cheap and effective).

Meerkat
01-22-2007, 06:31 PM
An aging Compaq Presario 2100. I am a huge fan of this company, after a half dozen machines that never let me down, unlike that other company, that rhymes with hell.....

tlblack
01-22-2007, 06:42 PM
It's necessary for me to "tune out" or "drowned out" the normal noises around me; the ticking grandfather clock; the tv blaring; the kids outside (nephews) arguing or screaming at each other and then laughing hysterically; a very verbal Aunt who only seems to get extremely talkative if she knows I'm writing. I much prefer to write my first draft out longhand with pen, pencil, crayon, whatever is handy and will suffice. Once I get the chance to get it on the computer (usually the wee hours of the morning when everyone is asleep) I will edit as I type it up and then print out a working copy that I can read back through, and most times edit again. The main reason for the working copy is because the computer is too distracting and too easy to just connect to the internet. If I know I will be typing for a while on my computer, I will disable the dsl.

Shadow_Ferret
01-22-2007, 06:59 PM
The Evolution of Writing, by Shadow Ferret

In the beginning, I worte long hand. It was convenient. I could do it in school instead of listening to the teacher in my notebook and they'd think I was actually taking notes. Fools.

Then I'd transcribe everything on my manual typewriter, with carbons. DOn't ask me why, but I always typed a carbon.

After typing it, I'd sit down with a pen and go over it making corrections, editing as necessary.

Then I'd retype the whole thing back on the typewriter. This always also ended up being part of the editing phase because often while typing I'd think of a whole new direction to go and the typed copy would invariably be different from the previous copy.

Now I use a computer. I rarely do it in long hand except maybe on a napkin in a restaurant and only for an idea, never for a whole story. My handwriting is just horrible.

The computer is just faster than a typewriter. I don't jam the hammers together because I'm typing faster than it can mechanically keep up. I don't have to fuss with Wite-Out or those paper strip things. And I never have to retype the whole blamed thing over and over and over again.

Cut and paste is my friend. Welcome to the 21st Century.

The End

Jamesaritchie
01-22-2007, 07:02 PM
I prefer a fountain pen, but my hands are in such bad shape that comfort has become essential, which means i've tried darned near every writing instrument there is. I can't find a fountain pen that doesn't make my poor old hands ache.

I've settled on two writing instruments, depending on my needs. A Special Edition Dr. Grip gel pen with a custom grip for when I want ink, and a 5mm Penmate Duo Expert Automatic Drafting Pencil, also with a custom grip, for when I need to erase. (An Automatic Drafting Pencil is really just a fancy mechanical pencil made for drafting work.) I can also stick red lead in this for editing work.

I love using a manual typewriter, and I have a good one, but finding cotton ribbons is such a hassle that I've almost given up trying.

Hate writing first drafts on a computer, and for the same reason PattiTheWicked likes it. If my writing is keeping up with my thoughts, I'm not writing nearly as well as I want to be. My first thought is almost never my best thought. Writing in longhand, and taking the time to write neatly, means I have time to think at least twice before I write a sentence.

Azure Skye
01-22-2007, 07:08 PM
Dell Laptop.

skelly
01-22-2007, 07:37 PM
There it is, in my avatar. The one and only Remington Quiet Writer. Alas, the term "quiet writer" must be relative. According to my wife it is anything but. So I revise completed rough drafts on the computer in the morning, then bang out new stuff on the Rem in the afternoon.

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 08:13 PM
People get their driver's license and stop walking everywhere, which I think is a damn shame.

People get computers, and lost a lot of the ability to handwrite and use typewriters. I do maintain that computers are good for many things, and writg is not necessarily one of them.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-22-2007, 08:18 PM
There it is, in my avatar. The one and only Remington Quiet Writer. Alas, the term "quiet writer" must be relative. According to my wife it is anything but. So I revise completed rough drafts on the computer in the morning, then bang out new stuff on the Rem in the afternoon.


I'll bet if you compare your Quiet Writer to a Smith-Corona Coronamatic Electric (which sounds like a machine gun while I'm typing on it) your typewriter is probably much quieter. :)

I got an email about the Underwood, and it's a bit out of my price range for the moment. But if I can save up the money over the next few months, I should be able to purchase one before too long.

I don't know, though. A brand-new Olivetti manual costs less than a ninety-year-old Underwood that has been refurbished, and has a warranty to boot. I might just break down and get the Olivetti instead.... unless I can find an Underwood cheaper at a local second-hand store.

I could ask the gentleman I bought my last Underwood from, if he still has his old No. 3, but I remember the bad old days typing on that monster. Still, it would be better than having to replace my Coronamatic cartridge every 30 or so pages.


Another thing I do use is my computer, although the only reason I enjoy using it is its ease of editing. Of course, the computer still does not allow me to bang on the keys very much, but at least if the ribbon ever runs out on the typewriter, I have it standing by.

giftedrhonda
01-22-2007, 08:20 PM
I nearly always compose on my Toshiba laptop, though I keep notepads EVERYWHERE for when inspiration hits me. Otherwise, I forget what I wanted to write. LOL

Carrie in PA
01-22-2007, 08:33 PM
People get their driver's license and stop walking everywhere, which I think is a damn shame.

People get computers, and lost a lot of the ability to handwrite and use typewriters. I do maintain that computers are good for many things, and writg is not necessarily one of them.

I live in the sticks. You don't drive, you're screwed, unless you have exceedingly kind neighbors or someone who will come pick you up whenever you need to get groceries. No public transportation, either.

My handwriting sucked loooong before I got a computer. Which wasn't in my youth.

So there. :tongue

I love my computer. I'm with Ferret - I used to get my typewriter keys jammed when I was on a roll, and then it's a pain getting them unstuck and then trying to get the ink off your hands.

There are some new-fangled things that I avoid, and will only adapt to kicking and screaming. My computer is not one of them. :D

Shadow_Ferret
01-22-2007, 08:40 PM
I do maintain that computers are good for many things, and writg is not necessarily one of them.

Sorry, my friend, but I just disagree. For me writing is the only thing a computer is good for. :) Which is why I refuse to spend much more than $500 on the stupid things.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-22-2007, 08:40 PM
I love my computer. I'm with Ferret - I used to get my typewriter keys jammed when I was on a roll, and then it's a pain getting them unstuck and then trying to get the ink off your hands.



I don't usually worry about getting the ink off my hands. Too much work involved that doesn't have to do with writing.

Interestingly enough, I don't know why I don't get a Selectric. They have a nice little ball element that doesn't get stuck--that I know of. I'm sure I could get one of those easily enough.

What do you all think? Should I even worry about a manual typewriter, or just keep using the electric?

Shadow_Ferret
01-22-2007, 08:45 PM
I will admit that making the selectric sound like a jackhammer is kinda cool. That's the only thing I miss about typing on a computer. Computers just kinda go tappity tappity tappity, whereas the typewriter had that loud CLACKITY CLACKITY CLACKITY sound. I think someone needs to create a sound program so you can choose the typewriter sound of your choice for when you type. Maybe an old manual Remington, complete with DING! (I do so miss the DING!), or the jackhammer sound of an IBM Selectric.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-22-2007, 08:48 PM
I will admit that making the selectric sound like a jackhammer is kinda cool. That's the only thing I miss about typing on a computer. Computers just kinda go tappity tappity tappity, whereas the typewriter had that loud CLACKITY CLACKITY CLACKITY sound. I think someone needs to create a sound program so you can choose the typewriter sound of your choice for when you type. Maybe an old manual Remington, complete with DING! (I do so miss the DING!), or the jackhammer sound of an IBM Selectric.


If I'm not mistaken, I believe there is a word processor that does have such software. I can't remember what it's called, though. I seem to remember Bartholomew and Jamesaritchie discussing it, on another thread somewhere.

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 08:48 PM
Sorry, my friend, but I just disagree. For me writing is the only thing a computer is good for. :) Which is why I refuse to spend much more than $500 on the stupid things.

Well, we can go have fisticuffs in the parking lot. Barring that, I'l just quietly believe things. :)

That said, I may dislike this computer bit, but I use them for a lot of my writing. In fact, I very rarely use handwriting...certainly I never use a typewriter.

I'm not always pleased with that. But deadlines are such a thing that I wind up using the computer and writing like lunatic.

Pat~
01-22-2007, 09:01 PM
Bic mechanical pencils for poetry. For some reason poems come longhand; I use my laptop for writing books, articles or devotionals, though.

badducky
01-22-2007, 09:09 PM
I tried using a computer, but you can't really get enough traction to leave a mark on the paper unless you push down hard enough to destroy the paper.

Also, it was bulky and I got tired after only a few minutes.

Then, I tried using a tape recorder. I've heard of people doing this. The weight was much lighter, and I knew I could write a lot longer with it. But, still, the paper was really destroyed more than it was written upon.

So, I figured the problem must be the paper. I tried differet things. First, an etch-a-sketch - which worked great until I tried handing my work to someone else. Then I tried bits of wood. I used the sharpest corner of the tape recorder to grind out a few words. That worked alright.

Then, I had my best idea of all. I took the tape recorder and used it to write on the flat-screen computer monitors. You'd be amazed how well words show when you carve them with the sharp edge of a tape recorder. Also, an added advantage is that you can always be reviewing and revising your work one page at a time while you surf the net. Even now, I'm writing my post and meandering through the cracks and warpings on the screen from my latest WiP.

Only down side that I can see is that I have to change monitors once every ten minutes. But, it's a small price to pay for my art.
;)

skelly
01-22-2007, 09:10 PM
I don't usually worry about getting the ink off my hands. Too much work involved that doesn't have to do with writing.

Interestingly enough, I don't know why I don't get a Selectric. They have a nice little ball element that doesn't get stuck--that I know of. I'm sure I could get one of those easily enough.

What do you all think? Should I even worry about a manual typewriter, or just keep using the electric?
I'd go for the manual, but I'm biased. I have three of them, an Underwood, the Rem, and a Singer that came out in the late 50's. Of the three, the Singer is probably the nicest, although it makes this harsh snap! when the keys strike the platen. The Underwood is sweet, but needs some work. The Rem has the nicest "feel" of the three, and a nice, crisp "tap." I found them all at thrift stores, and the most expensive one was $10. The ribbons are easily available at Office Depot. Keep looking, I bet your machine is out there somewhere in a thrift store, right behind the basketball goal and under all those old eight-track cartridges. :)

Carrie in PA
01-22-2007, 09:35 PM
So, I figured the problem must be the paper. I tried differet things. First, an etch-a-sketch - which worked great until I tried handing my work to someone else. Then I tried bits of wood. I used the sharpest corner of the tape recorder to grind out a few words. That worked alright.

:roll: :roll:

Thank you for that. LOL!!!!

BottomlessCup
01-22-2007, 10:00 PM
My handwriting gets all messy and I get lazy and start using abbreviations which I later totally forget what they mean.

Yeah, I do that, too.

In my notes for my WIP, I found "MYBW" which is apparently supposed to mean... something.

I also have a tendency to write down one or two word prompts while I'm driving, so that I don't forget by the end of a ten hour shift. Which doesn't really work.

I still have a logbook from two years ago, the back of which says- in triumphant black magic marker - "HOMESTEAD FIGHT/CRAB!!!!!!"

If anyone knows what that means, PM me immediately.

ChunkyC
01-22-2007, 10:04 PM
My handwriting is actually decent when I pay attention to it. I scribbled by hand when I was a kid, I still have some of the old notebooks I wrote my very first stories in at around seven or eight years of age.

When I was a teenager, I learned how to type at school, and eventually bought an old portable manual typewriter. I still have some stories I banged out on it.

Then the computer age hit. It wasn't until I had been using a computer for years that I finally decided to get serious about writing. I carry my Dell laptop with me to work and write on my breaks. I also carry a little notebook for jotting down things that occur to me. I use a pen that was given to me by a sales rep, it's heavy, which I like, and uses Parker refills, which I also like.

Upthread someone mentioned the noise typewriters make. I too really like that sound since I spent a lot of my youth on a typewriter. For the past few years I've been using a little program that was recommended by someone here. It's called Noisy Keyboard (http://www.leeos.com/noisy_keyboard.html). I run it whenever I'm going to be writing for any length of time.

greglondon
01-22-2007, 10:06 PM
computer (any kind, really),
text editor program (no word processor),
and some sort of revision control software like Perforce.
I store all my content on an external RAID drive,
so I'm not tied to any particular computer and don't have
to do any data herding when I get a new computer.

Using a text editor means any version control system can
display differences between versions, so I can go back
and look at changes I've made easily if I need to recover
something. It also means I can see how much writing
I've been doing since each rev will show the new text.

CaroGirl
01-22-2007, 10:06 PM
I use a desktop with separate ergonomic keyboard. I don't love laptops because, although conveniently portable, the keys are too small for my looong fingers. If I write longhand (which is rare) I use the nearest available stick with ink or lead in it and closest scrap of paper on which to scribble.

Stew21
01-22-2007, 10:07 PM
Yeah, I do that, too.

In my notes for my WIP, I found "MYBW" which is apparently supposed to mean... something.

I also have a tendency to write down one or two word prompts while I'm driving, so that I don't forget by the end of a ten hour shift. Which doesn't really work.

I still have a logbook from two years ago, the back of which says- in triumphant black magic marker - "HOMESTEAD FIGHT/CRAB!!!!!!"

If anyone knows what that means, PM me immediately.

One of the downfalls of handwriting. I've done a lot of handwriting on my works in progress, and I always have these moments.
I woke in the night and left the light off so I wouldn't wake Mr. Stew while I scribbled an idea I had to write down so I wouldn't forget and woke up excited to see it and was not only uncertain of the words, but if they were what I think they were, I have no idea what it had to do with any story I've written. Ever.

san_remo_ave
01-22-2007, 10:14 PM
I really do like to use the computer for writing --maybe it's because I'm on the stinking thing all day at work anyway --but I LOVE the ability to pop back and forth between docs, do a quick jump over to dictionary.com, wikipedia, whatever. Maybe it's because I'm a touch typist and use keyboard shortcuts all the time. I also have absolutely horrid handwriting (my husband complains I write like a doctor which is bizarre because... I'm not) and my hand cramps.... Now, I am picky about the software --too many bells and whistles are distracting and I get no writing done.

Shadow_Ferret
01-22-2007, 10:20 PM
Oddly enough, I didn't voluntarily join the computer ranks. I was dragged kicking and screaming. I was perfectly happy using pen, typewriter and paper. But when I started attending college, the writing course I took required you to at least TRY the computer. I guess they needed to justify the computer lab somehow. They used something called Volkswriter and WordPerfect 4 or earlier.

Anyway, I got into a few arguments with the teacher. I didn't want to use a computer. My argument was something along the lines of it's a word PROCESSOR. Kind of like a food processor. You throw a bunch of crap in and suddenly you think you're a cook. Or in this case, a writer.

Jamesaritchie
01-22-2007, 10:35 PM
There it is, in my avatar. The one and only Remington Quiet Writer. Alas, the term "quiet writer" must be relative. According to my wife it is anything but. So I revise completed rough drafts on the computer in the morning, then bang out new stuff on the Rem in the afternoon.

I own a Remington Quiet Writer. Not sure why they named it such. It is somewhat quieter than an old Underwood or the like, but you still don't want to use it when anyone is trying to sleep. Just ask my wife.

jodiodi
01-22-2007, 10:35 PM
I really do like to use the computer for writing --maybe it's because I'm on the stinking thing all day at work anyway --but I LOVE the ability to pop back and forth between docs, do a quick jump over to dictionary.com, wikipedia, whatever. Maybe it's because I'm a touch typist and use keyboard shortcuts all the time. I also have absolutely horrid handwriting (my husband complains I write like a doctor which is bizarre because... I'm not) and my hand cramps.... Now, I am picky about the software --too many bells and whistles are distracting and I get no writing done.

I have the same problems with my handwriting attempts.

Like others, I type as fast or faster than I think therefore the computer is the prefect medium for me. I started out as a child, longhand, then quickly moved to typewriters and then computers. I can't stand that loud clicking sound typewriters make and much prefer the fairly silent keyboards on my multiple computers (3 desktops, 2 laptops). The writing is clear and I can edit as I need to without the time crunch. Plus, it's much easier for me to read what's on the screen than on a written piece of paper. Then again, I've always been a technology-friendly writer.

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 10:37 PM
I own a Remington Quiet Writer. Not sure why they named it such. It is somewhat quieter than an old Underwood or the like, but you still don't want to use it when anyone is trying to sleep. Just ask my wife.

One of the reasons I finally stopped using a typewriter (and subsequently sold it, and now regret that wholeheartedly) was when my offices started becoming rooms with really astonishing acoustics.

I could have been executing people in a firing squad and it would've been quieter.

Jamesaritchie
01-22-2007, 10:38 PM
It's called Noisy Keyboard (http://www.leeos.com/noisy_keyboard.html). I run it whenever I'm going to be writing for any length of time.

Noisy keyboard is what I use, works great, and with any word processor, but the Atlantis word processor comes with sound effects built in, if anyone is interested. http://www.atlantiswordprocessor.com/en/

Jamesaritchie
01-22-2007, 10:43 PM
Addicted as I am to writing in longhand (I actually blieve writing is better when done longhand, and I think there's decent scientific evidence to back this up.), I've also written stories using dip pens, both steel and glass, and I've even written stories using a goose feather quill that I cut myself, and with paper and ink I made myself.

I think computers are wonderful tools for final drafts, but are truly lousy for first drafts. Every "advantage" I see writers give a computer seems like a major handicap to me.

PeeDee
01-22-2007, 10:43 PM
*goes off*

*downloads it*

It looks just like every version of Word up until I got my sexy, (and now, gutted) version of Word 2007.

But I'll play with it no less. Still, I think when it comes to computer programs, upgrading to Word 2007 was the first time I actually enjoyed writing in a new program, instead of heartily loathing it.

jodiodi
01-22-2007, 10:48 PM
Addicted as I am to writing in longhand (I actually blieve writing is better when done longhand, and I think there's decent scientific evidence to back this up.), I've also written stories using dip pens, both steel and glass, and I've even written stories using a goose feather quill that I cut myself, and with paper and ink I made myself.

I think computers are wonderful tools for final drafts, but are truly lousy for first drafts. Every "advantage" I see writers give a computer seems like a major handicap to me.

I've tried to write longhand and end up throwing everything away in frustration. My hands hurt, my eyes hurt, my head hurts, the story in my mind is chapters beyond what my pitiful hands can keep up with. I suppose some people do enjoy longhand, but I find it useful only for signing my name. I even do grocery lists on the computer.

Jamesaritchie
01-22-2007, 10:56 PM
I've tried to write longhand and end up throwing everything away in frustration. My hands hurt, my eyes hurt, my head hurts, the story in my mind is chapters beyond what my pitiful hands can keep up with. I suppose some people do enjoy longhand, but I find it useful only for signing my name. I even do grocery lists on the computer.

Writing in longhand is like anyting else. If you don't do it, you can't do it. Pity schools gave up making kids learn how to write in longhand, and teachng good penmanship. It's becoming a lost art, and I strongly believe it's taking a good bit of our intellect with it.

Shadow_Ferret
01-22-2007, 11:00 PM
But I'll play with it no less. Still, I think when it comes to computer programs, upgrading to Word 2007 was the first time I actually enjoyed writing in a new program, instead of heartily loathing it.
That does sound like an interesting program. I will download it for fun. As far as Word, I'm still at Word 97 and see no reason to upgrade (since it costs money and I already have this version).

I just hope Atlantis can import Word files seamlessly.

skelly
01-23-2007, 12:58 AM
I own a Remington Quiet Writer. Not sure why they named it such. It is somewhat quieter than an old Underwood or the like, but you still don't want to use it when anyone is trying to sleep. Just ask my wife.
lol. I reckon you and I both got the same lecture. I downloaded that Noisy Type thing, or whatever, but I couldn't figure out how to get it to work. Then I closed it from my what-the-hell-ever that thing is that pops up on the far right side of the bar (at the bottom, Windows XP), and now I can't even find the program.

Typical. :)

jodiodi
01-23-2007, 01:02 AM
You mean the task bar?

Go into the start menue, then all programs. It should be there somewhere.

skelly
01-23-2007, 01:07 AM
Nope. Thanks tho. Can't finds the bastard in windows explorer either. But it was there ... I saw an icon.

Arisa81
01-23-2007, 01:16 AM
For short pieces like poetry, greetings, fillers etc. I write them fully on paper with pen first. Type them up later.
For longer items such as articles, stories etc. I usually brainstorm on paper and then write the actual piece on the desktop. If I really want to write these longer items on paper first, I need to type them up as I go along (maybe every 1-2 pages), otherwise it just takes too long.

Pamster
01-23-2007, 01:26 AM
It depends on what I am writing, if I am writing an outline I like to do it in pen on college ruled paper or a college ruled notebook. I like to use pencil for poetry and papermate pens for writing outlines and other things. For first drafting something, like one of my kid's stories I will use the computer. I don't have too many extra keys getting hit or my keyboard is just not ultra sensitive anymore, I do pretty well typing. :)

PeeDee
01-23-2007, 02:06 AM
I tried the clackity noise for the computer -- and that program that James pointed out -- and it bugged the crap out of me. If I use a typewriter, I don't mind it, but I don't need the sound and it doesn't do anything for me when I'm on the computer. Besides, when I get up to speed, I make a fair amount of noise on the keyboard anyway.

ChunkyC
01-23-2007, 02:21 AM
Nope. Thanks tho. Can't finds the bastard in windows explorer either. But it was there ... I saw an icon.
Noisy Keyboard is a simple program that isn't actually 'installed', so you won't find it in the 'all programs' menu. You need to double-click the main file to run it. What I do is put a shortcut to it in the quicklaunch bar (that spot just to the right of the start button), then click it when I want it to run.

As for finding it on your system, did you 'extract' the file, skelly? The download is a zip file, so you need to extract the files and stash them somewhere on your system, then create a shortcut that points to the 'executable' file. Be sure to read the ReadMe.txt file that's included in the zip file, all the instructions are in there.

It will give you sounds when working in text editors of all kinds. NotePad, Wordpad, Word, OpenOffice, etc. It even works in a new post window here.

skelly
01-23-2007, 03:43 AM
Thanks for the info C.C. I will do that, and if nothing else, I suppose DLing it again would help me find it. I would like such a program, I think. :)

ChunkyC
01-23-2007, 03:47 AM
:) If nothing else, it's kinda fun. But I discovered I like having the sound while writing. It takes me back to the days of sitting in the basement clacking away at the old portable, dreaming of being the next Isaac Asimov.

Dave.C.Robinson
01-23-2007, 06:05 AM
I write mostly on the desktop with my ergonomic keyboard-- I'm left handed and because the pen rests on bone when I write I can't write much at all longhand. It's good for roughing out basic ideas, but not for any serious composition. Longhand is slow and painful for me so it's not much good in the long term.

I also have the laptop and a folding keyboard for my iPaq and have written successfully on both. Still it's the desktop (dual monitors) that does the heavy lifting.

janetbellinger
01-23-2007, 06:07 AM
I use my computer most to write with but I get the most satisfaction out of using my fountain pen on lined paper.

PeeDee
01-23-2007, 06:09 AM
I write mostly on the desktop with my ergonomic keyboard-- I'm left handed and because the pen rests on bone when I write I can't write much at all longhand. It's good for roughing out basic ideas, but not for any serious composition. Longhand is slow and painful for me so it's not much good in the long term.

It rests on bone? Whut?

I'm left-handed, but I can write comfortably for extended periods by hand. Then again, I'm used to handwriting, but I'm not aware of bone problems. (which is my ignorance, certainly, and not yours. :))

Dave.C.Robinson
01-23-2007, 06:26 AM
It rests on bone? Whut?

I'm left-handed, but I can write comfortably for extended periods by hand. Then again, I'm used to handwriting, but I'm not aware of bone problems. (which is my ignorance, certainly, and not yours. :))

It's a long story, but I broke my arm when I was learning to write. The result is that when I hold the pen the barrel rests on the inner side of the left second finger between the knuckles, not on the fingertips. It puts the pressure against the bone rather than a pad and it hurts if I write a lot.

PeeDee
01-23-2007, 06:31 AM
It's a long story, but I broke my arm when I was learning to write. The result is that when I hold the pen the barrel rests on the inner side of the left second finger between the knuckles, not on the fingertips. It puts the pressure against the bone rather than a pad and it hurts if I write a lot.

Ouch, okay that makes sense. I thought maybe this was just a general left-hand-people thing, and I was being clueless again. Urk, I can see why you use the computer then. :)

Roger McMillian
01-23-2007, 06:38 AM
Before I got my Compaq Presario Laptop, I did most of my writing on legal pads with disposable, mechanical pencils. After I'd fill a pad, I'd dictate it to my desktop computer, also a Compaq Presario, using MS Office's dictation program. Now, I use the laptop and I'm training its dictation program so for those times when I can't have the laptop, I'll use legal pads and dictate it later.

PeeDee
01-23-2007, 06:42 AM
Before I got my Compaq Presario Laptop, I did most of my writing on legal pads with disposable, mechanical pencils. After I'd fill a pad, I'd dictate it to my desktop computer, also a Compaq Presario, using MS Office's dictation program. Now, I use the laptop and I'm training its dictation program so for those times when I can't have the laptop, I'll use legal pads and dictate it later.

This is the third time someone's mentioned Microsoft Office having a dictation program. I haven't the faintest idea where it is. Could someone point me in the general direction if it, please? I'd be interested in fiddling with it.

Dixie
01-23-2007, 06:56 AM
I use the desktop PC of course. But there's nothing like the the true act of writing. All it takes is a ballpoint pen and a spiral notebook. Id love to 'upgrade' to a leather journal sometime, just so I have something 'nice' that doesnt mind the occassional abuse. I should be carrying a notepad and a pen in my truck at all times but I dont.

Id love to get a laptop someday so I can still continue my typing well into the night without disturbing others and not having to get out of bed.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-23-2007, 08:08 AM
Well, I got the manual typewriter, although the only reason I did so was I could not find the Smith-Corona cartridge I needed for my electric.

My manual, which I purchased at a thrift store, is a Royal Quiet DeLuxe, and I had to buy some new ribbon for it. The only gripe I have about the machine, is that the tabs don't stay where they're supposed to. I can tab to the desired spot the first time, then the next time I try to tab to that spot, it will go to ten spaces farther down.

So I'm presently using the space bar to get my indents done.

But one cool thing about this machine is its paper holder, which my old Royal did not have. It holds the paper up so it doesn't end up bending or otherwise making noise as it rubs against the table.


So that's what I have now. The only thing I really want to do beyond this is find a buyer for the Smith-Corona. I'll have to let the person know they'll have to order the cartridges for the typewriter, which will definitely be a pain in the rear for them.

I guess what really surprised me about today's expedition, is the fact I had an easier time finding a twin-spool ribbon for an old Royal Manual than I did for a Smith-Corona electric from thirty years ago.

skelly
01-23-2007, 12:35 PM
Well, I got the manual typewriter, although the only reason I did so was I could not find the Smith-Corona cartridge I needed for my electric.

My manual, which I purchased at a thrift store, is a Royal Quiet DeLuxe, and I had to buy some new ribbon for it. The only gripe I have about the machine, is that the tabs don't stay where they're supposed to. I can tab to the desired spot the first time, then the next time I try to tab to that spot, it will go to ten spaces farther down.

So I'm presently using the space bar to get my indents done.

But one cool thing about this machine is its paper holder, which my old Royal did not have. It holds the paper up so it doesn't end up bending or otherwise making noise as it rubs against the table.


So that's what I have now. The only thing I really want to do beyond this is find a buyer for the Smith-Corona. I'll have to let the person know they'll have to order the cartridges for the typewriter, which will definitely be a pain in the rear for them.

I guess what really surprised me about today's expedition, is the fact I had an easier time finding a twin-spool ribbon for an old Royal Manual than I did for a Smith-Corona electric from thirty years ago.
Congrats! Sounds like a sweet little machine. I use the space bar for my indents too. I think most of these old machines will have a few quirks you have to work around. For what that Mr. Typewriter dude wants for a refurbished machine, I can hit the space bar five times at the start of a new paragraph. I hope you write a best-seller on it :)

Old Hack
01-23-2007, 01:12 PM
I used to write non-fiction straight to screen, but fiction had to be written in longhand and typed up later. Then, about two years ago, I developed horrible RSI which still is painful now.

I use Dragon Naturally Speaking/ Dragon Dictate now, for as much typing as possible. I'm considering getting a digital recorder so I can just speak then transcribe without having to tweak things too much. But it's difficult dictating: my voice is a distraction and hearing myself interrupts the flow of my thoughts. Nevertheless, I will not stop writing. I am obsessed.

Chasing the Horizon
01-23-2007, 02:06 PM
I use my blueberry Clamshell IBook. I bought it last year, but it was made in 1999. It has the nicest keyboard I have ever used built in. I never thought a laptop could have a better keyboard than a desktop, but it is so super soft to the touch, all I have to do is think about hitting the keys and they go down. My hands never get tired. And it's to old and slow to connect to my internet, so there are no distractions.

I'm also fanatically picky about the word processor I'll use. It absolutely has to be be Appleworks, nothing else will do. I've been using versions of Appleworks since long before it was called Appleworks and I'll never use anything else.

I type absolutely everything. Even notes. If I write them by hand, I either lose the paper or can't read what I've written. I'm another one who types grocery lists! I think I'm forgetting how to hand write period, since I never do it. I carry my laptop with me, so there's just no need for pens or paper.

I learned to type on a computer before I learned to hand write anything, so I'm sure that's my main reason for preferring it. I've been writing stories on various Apple/Mac computers since I was six years old.

I've never used a typewriter in my entire life. How do you type without a delete key? What happens when you make a typo?

skelly
01-23-2007, 04:10 PM
Well, you xxxe have to be a lot moxx more XXXXXX (dammit!) precise with your funxxxx fingers.

:)

Sean D. Schaffer
01-23-2007, 04:17 PM
Congrats! Sounds like a sweet little machine. I use the space bar for my indents too. I think most of these old machines will have a few quirks you have to work around. For what that Mr. Typewriter dude wants for a refurbished machine, I can hit the space bar five times at the start of a new paragraph. I hope you write a best-seller on it :)


Funny you should mention Mr. Typewriter. He's the one I had originally contacted about the Underwood. He quoted me somewhere around $500.00 for a refurbished Underwood No. 6. I can buy two brand-new Olivetti full-sized manuals for less than that... direct from the manufacturer.

I found out what was wrong with my tabular. It seems it needed some oil in the back. Once I got the thing oiled, I now have a good tabular set at five spaces that actually stays where it belongs.

Even so, I will still probably be using the space bar. I don't want to tab halfway across the page by mistake trying to make a five-space indent one of these days.

skelly
01-23-2007, 04:32 PM
Funny you should mention Mr. Typewriter. He's the one I had originally contacted about the Underwood. He quoted me somewhere around $500.00 for a refurbished Underwood No. 6. I can buy two brand-new Olivetti full-sized manuals for less than that... direct from the manufacturer.
Yeah, that's what I thought. That dude's out of his blinkin mind. Ask him what he wants for an old Royal, Model 10.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-23-2007, 04:41 PM
Yeah, that's what I thought. That dude's out of his blinkin mind. Ask him what he wants for an old Royal, Model 10.


Um, no thanks. I had enough of the guy with the Underwood inquiry.

Well, I oiled a lot of the parts on my Royal, and put some leather conditioner on the cylinder. The typewriter looks, and operates, rather nicely. My only gripe now is the fact it travels across the desk (it's a portable).

But in any case, I've got a good manual typewriter again. It's in decent shape and I'm able to write again. So, good!

:)

Pamster
01-23-2007, 05:38 PM
My mom used to have an old IBM typewriter, boy was it tight, it didn't have the erase function her later bought Olivetti did. That was a sweet machine too, but I need the editability of the computer and use Word anymore. Like I had posted before though, I remember typing but it was much later that I began writing seriously. I only typed when I wrote letters. :)

What kind of typewriter is the avatar you use skelly? I like it by the way...it reminds me a little of the old IBM which I can remember my mother's fingers flying as she wrote. :hi:

She was a writer back in the 80's and I think she is going to pick it back up when she gets a computer at home. I look forward to seeing what she comes up with because she had some interesting short stories and I just know she'd be able to fly through writing a full novel. She's just that sharp. I told her about this place and she smiled and said that she could see the difference in my writing after seeing the two docs I drew up for the Gather contest, the author bio and the one page synopsis. :)

skelly
01-23-2007, 07:36 PM
It's a Remington Quiet Writer Pam. Circa the mid 1950's. Ian, cut up an old mouse pad (one with the non-skid rubber bottom) and set your typewriter's ... legs, feet, whatever they're called ... on those. Clears it right up.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-23-2007, 10:52 PM
It's a Remington Quiet Writer Pam. Circa the mid 1950's. Ian, cut up an old mouse pad (one with the non-skid rubber bottom) and set your typewriter's ... legs, feet, whatever they're called ... on those. Clears it right up.


You know? I hadn't thought about that. My typewriter has a foam pad underneath it, but I never stopped and realized my typewriter's feet are hollow, and could thus facilitate small similar pads inside the feet. That would probably do much better than the setup I have now. Even with the pad under the typewriter, the typewriter still travels across the desk on top of the pad.

But if the pads were inside the typewriter's feet, that would be a whole new ballgame.

Thanks!

:)

Pamster
01-23-2007, 11:08 PM
Well it's a gorgeous looking machine skelly. I just had to comment on it since we're talking typewriters. I used to have this computer by a comapny that went under called Amiga. The keyboard WAS the entire computer, it was so cool, it had a disk drive in it and even a hard drive-back when 65 MBs was a lot of memory. I used a program called Final Copy.

It was a nice set up. Anyone remember the old A600 I am talking about? Sweet piece of machine. But then so was that IBM my mom had, I remember it making all kinds of noise as she wrote. She finally did get a word processor, but it was from sears, a brothers. :p I told her a computer would have served her better but she didn't want one.

Anyway this is a great thread, just had to express how cool it is to share in everyone's experiences like this. This is the coolest place I have ever seen online and I am glad to be part of the atmosphere here. :D

Sean D. Schaffer
01-25-2007, 05:51 AM
Well, I did what you suggested, Skelly. I stuck the foam padding to the feet using Scotch Tape. The typewriter doesn't move around hardly at all, even when I push against it with my hand. I appreciate so much the advice you gave me concerning this idea. Thanks!



:e2BIC:

Pamster
01-25-2007, 06:39 PM
Well, I did what you suggested, Skelly. I stuck the foam padding to the feet using Scotch Tape. The typewriter doesn't move around hardly at all, even when I push against it with my hand. I appreciate so much the advice you gave me concerning this idea. Thanks!



:e2BIC:

Awesome Ian! I bet that is a lot more stable for you to work on now. :D This forum is so wonderful, you guys are all great. I've never felt such a sense of belonging in a long, long time. Meaning on a message board anyway. ;) :Hug2:

Sean D. Schaffer
01-25-2007, 10:23 PM
Awesome Ian! I bet that is a lot more stable for you to work on now. :D


It is much more stable now. After having put those feet on, I don't have to move the typewriter back into the proper place all the time.

It's pretty nice.

TrainofThought
01-26-2007, 05:22 AM
I wrote my first draft longhand using personalized pens (I love them) my friends bought for my graduation gift. I typed it on my laptop, but I feel separated from my WIP. On the weekends, I revise on the computer if things are flowing otherwise a notebook when I get a brain freeze. I recently started taking a chapter at a time of my WIP putting it in a notebook to revise on my commute home. To me, there is nothing like a rendezvous with a pen and paper, scratching out lines, making arrows for insertions and finding the perfect words to describe a scene, a voice, etc.

skelly
01-26-2007, 01:07 PM
Glad to see you got it going Ian! Good luck with your WIP. I think I would enjoy writing longhand, TrainofThought. Particularly sitting out on the back porch on a summer evening. But like a lot of other folks here, I can't read my own handwriting.

Gonzo
01-26-2007, 04:14 PM
I'm old fashioned, have a note book which I sketch in and write with BUT I must use Pilot V5 pens, I buy them in bulk, good artist and writing pen. I then type up 30 pages of the notebook at a time and then make sense of the madness and compile and edit and edit and edit on a laptop. Then I just carry on with the laptop, normally in bed - it's the only action it ever sees.

KiraOnWhite
01-26-2007, 05:56 PM
My first draft is written in a white A-zone foolscap pad, with a nice black pen with a clear case to match. Like most of you here, I'm easily turned on by the traditional writing materials...no offence to MS word though. Somehow, the notebook emanates a more sentimental vibe, compared to stuff typed up on the comp.

finch
01-26-2007, 06:28 PM
8x5 ring-bound college-rule notebooks and a mechanical pencil (0.5mm) is where I do the bulk of the conception work. That can vary a bit, but the vast majority of the new scenework I do comes out when I have that particular combination available. Dunno why. Laptop otherwise.

Sean D. Schaffer
01-26-2007, 06:35 PM
8x5 ring-bound college-rule notebooks and a mechanical pencil (0.5mm) is where I do the bulk of the conception work. That can vary a bit, but the vast majority of the new scenework I do comes out when I have that particular combination available. Dunno why. Laptop otherwise.


Forgive me for asking a possibly stupid question, but I've noticed with those mechanical pencils, that with some of them the lead does not stay out when you press down on the instrument. Is this a normal thing with these pencils or are they perhaps broken?

I must also point out that I push very hard on the pencil when I write.


But in any case, I'm pleasantly surprised to see so many people using longhand to write their works. I didn't think a lot of people did that anymore. It's nice to know people still rely on the simplest tools available to our generation.

:)

Shadow_Ferret
01-26-2007, 07:35 PM
I'm thinking you just have used cheaper mechanical pencils. Some do that, but with the quality ones the lead doesn't retract as you write.

Pamster
01-26-2007, 07:49 PM
It's papermate all the way for me, I love their pens and miss the old metal refillable ones that were medium point, black ink. The eraser mates are ok and I used to use those and these refillable ones were a little like those only just a hair thinner and had silver with a bold one color barrel. Those were the pens, if I had known they weren't going to keep making them I'd have bought a buttload of them darnit! Best pens I ever had. For now I use the new papermate Profiles and they work great! You don't have to press really hard on them to get a bold thin line and they are smooth rolling. :)

Sean D. Schaffer
01-26-2007, 07:54 PM
I'm thinking you just have used cheaper mechanical pencils. Some do that, but with the quality ones the lead doesn't retract as you write.


Yeah, you're probably right. The ones I've used actually belonged to a friend. I've never bought any for myself. He goes through those things very quickly. But I don't think he writes with so heavy a push on the page as I do.

But if I'm not mistaken, he usually gets a cheaper model for economy's sake. I think he buys them in multi-packs.


ETA:
When I use pens, I usually go for the Bic black ink ballpoints. The transparent ones. They're inexpensive and also very reliable. My only complaint about the Bics is, because I push so hard on the pens, I end up cracking the pen's outer plastic shell.

Pagey's_Girl
01-26-2007, 09:07 PM
I used to prefer writing longhand (and still have the masses of spiral notebooks to prove it) but I've really come to like working on a computer, either the big boy or my new laptop. Once I got to the point where I could type fast enough to keep up with my thoughts, longhand became something of a bother.

Pamster
01-26-2007, 10:53 PM
Yeah, you're probably right. The ones I've used actually belonged to a friend. I've never bought any for myself. He goes through those things very quickly. But I don't think he writes with so heavy a push on the page as I do.

But if I'm not mistaken, he usually gets a cheaper model for economy's sake. I think he buys them in multi-packs.


ETA:
When I use pens, I usually go for the Bic black ink ballpoints. The transparent ones. They're inexpensive and also very reliable. My only complaint about the Bics is, because I push so hard on the pens, I end up cracking the pen's outer plastic shell.

I have had that happen before with the transparent Bics. I really love this Profile style pen, it's got a soft grip and clickable pen. It's a cool pen and I love that you don't have to press so hard for making a bold line.

I haven't ever really gotten into mechanical pencils, since high school but the kind I used to get looked yellow like regular pencils with a regular eraser. Scripto was the brand we always had in the house. :)

TrainofThought
01-27-2007, 01:04 AM
Glad to see you got it going Ian! Good luck with your WIP. I think I would enjoy writing longhand, TrainofThought. Particularly sitting out on the back porch on a summer evening. But like a lot of other folks here, I can't read my own handwriting.It takes longer to read my writing then it does typing, atrocious, but I canít give up the pen and paper. My thoughts flow better when I write longhand and I get giddy when I see the scratch outs, arrows, poor handwriting. For some reason I feel a sense of accomplishment. Iím strange. :)

Shadow_Ferret
01-27-2007, 01:08 AM
I find the longhand clique to be a little odd. Not that I like you guys any less, just that I can't really relate.

My penmanship is unreadable. Heck, even my signature is just a bunch of loops. And my thoughts start to get backed up when I write on paper. The ideas all start tumbling over each other like Keystone Cops out of the paddywagon.

That's why I type. I can at least keep them from stumbling over each other and they seem a little more respectful, waiting their turn as I type.

ChunkyC
01-27-2007, 01:18 AM
This is the third time someone's mentioned Microsoft Office having a dictation program. I haven't the faintest idea where it is. Could someone point me in the general direction if it, please? I'd be interested in fiddling with it.
Go here (http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/setup/expert/moskowitz_02september23.mspx) for details.

awatkins
01-27-2007, 01:27 AM
I have a nerve problem with my hands that interferes with my grip on the pen, steadiness, etc. Only occasionally can I write much with a pen or pencil. And I can't handwrite nearly as fast as the words flow when I'm working. Now, the keyboard--I can really fly on it! Can type almost as fast as I can think.

TrainofThought
01-27-2007, 01:43 AM
And my thoughts start to get backed up when I write on paper. Are you constipated at the time? :D

Shadow_Ferret
01-27-2007, 01:46 AM
No. I take metamucil.

finch
01-27-2007, 05:01 AM
I find the longhand clique to be a little odd. Not that I like you guys any less, just that I can't really relate.

Can't use the laptop on the subway. Not handy at the laundromat. Totally impractical while camping. Sure, I like the laptop, but it's just not convenient enough.

Shadow_Ferret
01-27-2007, 09:40 AM
Guess I don't understand why you can't use it in those situations. Seems those are the perfect times for a laptop. That's what it was designed for. Travel. Waiting. Killing time.

benbradley
01-27-2007, 09:57 AM
Guess I don't understand why you can't use it in those situations. Seems those are the perfect times for a laptop. That's what it was designed for. Travel. Waiting. Killing time.

Tired of writing? Need to kill time? Tetris. :)

finch
01-27-2007, 10:33 AM
Guess I don't understand why you can't use it in those situations. Seems those are the perfect times for a laptop. That's what it was designed for. Travel. Waiting. Killing time.

Ever been on a NYC subway? Not the place for a laptop. Ditto the laundromat with all the non-laptop-friendly substances. Not exactly any outlets while camping, so I get 4 hours of writing tops -- not nearly enough. Add to that the laptop contains distractions, while the paper provides only focus. Sure, there are places I can use it, but it's not consistent enough to base a habit on. The notebook, however, is.

(Edit: packing in for a real camping trip? Laptop PC is 3-8 pounds, notebook with pencil is mere ounces. No contest ;) )

Mags
01-27-2007, 03:13 PM
I love fountain pens, too, though it seems I always get in a groove and then have to stop and change cartridges. For most everyday tasks I like the Pilot G2 pen. I keep the mini ones in my small purse (small purse as opposed to my larger "commuter bag" that I take to work every day).

I used to write a lot in longhand, but these days I do most of my writing either on my PC or on my Treo with the folding keyboard (described in the writing-with-Starbucks thread). My writing time is limited and I must be efficient, and having to retype a longhand draft is not efficient. Also I type 100+ wpm so I can actually keep up with my train of thought when I'm going great guns.

Sometimes I need to outline in longhand, though. Legal pads and/or index cards. If I use index cards I write on them in a mechanical pencil--just a cheap plastic throwaway one, nothing special, I just prefer them to having to resharpen all the time. The yellow-orange Bic ones are great.

Mud Dauber
01-29-2007, 02:35 AM
Guess I don't understand why you can't use it in those situations. Seems those are the perfect times for a laptop. That's what it was designed for. Travel. Waiting. Killing time.
That's what I thought when I plunked down the moolah for a laptop. Unfortunately my Toshiba battery is only good for 30 minutes, if that.:cry: When I need mobility, it's back to good ol' pencil and paper. And btw, to answer the OP's question, my prefered writing instrument (for longhand) must be either Dixon Ticonderogas or Mirado Black Warriors- freshly sharpened. And a Magic Rub eraser. Then I'm a happy girl.:D

wm_bookworm
01-30-2007, 06:45 PM
Me? I find that I go back and forth between using the computer and going handwritten. I agree with earlier comments that when typing from the handwritten, you'll edit the work which will effectively give you a second draft. I also find that it is easier to edit when doing so, because you're typing each word as opposed to simply reading it. You'll catch more of your errors that way, I think.

My writing utensil of choice? Mechanical pencil! Always has been, so I can make a clean copy. But I get annoyed by the breaking of lead and the fading over time. I think I've just convinced myself to go with the pen! XD

thethinker42
01-31-2007, 06:19 AM
My brand new Dell laptop. :) The keyboard took some getting used to, but I've gotten the hang of it.

My handwriting is atrocious, so typing is a MUST. LOL

thethinker42
01-31-2007, 06:30 AM
my husband complains I write like a doctor which is bizarre because... I'm not

One of my co-workers decided that I have "serial killer handwriting".

I'm not exactly sure what that means...but it sure makes new people at work nervous when someone tells them that. LOL

thethinker42
01-31-2007, 06:36 AM
I find the longhand clique to be a little odd. Not that I like you guys any less, just that I can't really relate.

I'm with you on this one. Everyone has their own personal style, but I've never been able to get my head around the idea of writing it out and THEN typing it up. To each their own, of course. :)

But then, I also have tendonitis in my hand and fingers, plus horrible handwriting. I can type for hours on end with very little, if any, discomfort -- even after an hour or two of weightlifting, which does a number on my fingers -- but longhand? Two or three paragraphs, tops, and I'm done.

Ah well, our books all look the same in print. :) It's just something I don't understand, though I'm always fascinated with everyone's little quirks (preferring a typewriter or pen, etc).

tony1
01-31-2007, 08:46 AM
I prefer to do my writing on the computer, simply because I can type nearly as fast as I think -- when I'm writing by hand, my hand can't keep up with my brain.

On the other hand, I do love journaling and I do that all by hand, in a leather-bound notebook with an inky blue pen.

Ditto. I also have a brother WP I bang around on

bardwell
02-01-2007, 05:03 AM
For me, it depends on what I'm writing. If it's a "slower" passage, one I need to think a lot about, I might write in a notebook with a Uni-Ball Gel Impact. But when I'm writing faster-paced stuff I want the pleasant, light, fast touch of my iBook.

glassquill
02-01-2007, 06:27 AM
I always write long hand for my first draft and then type it out on the computer later. I've tried to type directly into the computer but that backspace key is proving to be too much of a temptation to ignore. :tongue And I'm still trying to get used to my AlphaSmart. If only it had a bigger screen.

kristin724
02-01-2007, 07:50 AM
What a cool thread! Where to begin?

I don't know what model it was, but I used at typewriter when I Was a kid. My nieces have since taken it over as a 'cash register'. Now at my day job, no one else attempts the electric typewriter but me, and my old one was a manual that I could disassemble and put back together again.

Even when I got one of those keyboards that you plugged into the old tv, I wrote long hand. I would write and scribble in one notebook atfer another with any pen I could find. Sometimes I switched to loose leaf in binders and then type it all into the pc. I also agree it is like going to a second copy for editing as you go.

Now I just got a Dell Insiron for Christmas, and I am still transitioning from my writing bag full of binders and notebooks. I type written copy or compose directly as I need to. At my day job I currently have no internet access, so I can't type and email myself the data. Instead I've made notebooks from scrap paper or messed up copy, and I write away on my lunch.

Now, a note on pens. I will use any and all, but I prefer papermate brands I think. I've recently gone through an oversize pen phase. I started out with about a 6 inch pen, then jumped to a foot long one! It was kind of funny (small writing, small paper, huge ass pen) but it strengthed my wrist. Oddly, they didn't carry much more ink, and ran out kind of quick. Now I'm back down to a chunky slightly bigger pen, and if I use normal pens I find I can write faster and they feel lighter.

Who knew?

AncientEagle
02-01-2007, 10:00 AM
I bought a Smith-Corona Clipper portable, on time, the day after I graduated from college. Pounded out a short story, mailed it out five days later, and made my first sale, for enough to pay for my typewriter twice over. I lugged it around a good part of the world before someone stole it out of my car just after I'd had it totally refurbished. I've never been completely happy since it's been gone.

I write almost entirely on a Compaq Presario desktop, with a Dana portable word processor for the few times I need more portability. While I still love typewriters, and in fact still hang onto a couple of ancient portables, the computer is what really makes it possible for me to write. The ease of it seduces me, while the difficulty of any other method has me finding excuses to delay. I enjoy the feel of a new pen stroking across a new pad, but my handwriting gets sloppier by the year, so I enjoy that feeling mostly for notetaking. Which doesn't stop me from buying new supplies of pens and pads anytime I'm around a place that sells them.

cool_st_elizabeth
02-01-2007, 06:45 PM
I can't write in longhand. I do everything on the computer, which has the best keyboard ever made ... the OmniKey Ultra. It weighs a couple of pounds, and the letters are not painted on the tops of the keys, but are embedded all the way down into the plastic. This keyboard is no longer manufactured, and in the unlikely event it ever breaks down, it can be repaired!

I also have an IBM Thinkpad from 1999 that someone gave me. After we reinstalled the operating system and purchased memory sticks and a network card, I discovered I hate it. Can't type on it to save my life.

Kate Thornton
02-01-2007, 07:09 PM
I use a computer. I have only one working hand, and it's not my writing hand. I am unable to even sign my name. But I am fast on a keyboard and write like crazy. Without the keyboard, I would be unable to write. I am delighted to live in the Age of Computers!

jst5150
02-01-2007, 07:16 PM
A tuba. With refillable notes. ;-)

scarletpeaches
02-01-2007, 07:20 PM
Laptop with MS Word installed, although I'm thinking of going back to notepad and pen for all first drafts, to get me away from that rackin' frackin' interwebs.

janetbellinger
02-01-2007, 07:27 PM
black ink fountain pen

Sean D. Schaffer
02-01-2007, 07:39 PM
Wow! I am amazed at how many people write their first drafts longhand. I think that's cool. I try to imagine myself doing that but, because I press so hard on any pen or pencil I use, I find my hand and wrist gets very fatigued when I use them.

Still, I admire anyone who can and does write their work in longhand. It's good to know people still value the handwritten word along with the typewritten or printed word.

This is cool.

:)

kristin724
02-02-2007, 07:03 AM
I've also used the Dragon Dictation software for shorter work. I find saying all the open quote end quote period et al is cumbersome for longer work. One of the reasons I was so reluctant to get a laptop was the smaller keyboard, but I've adapted just fine. The split ones I find unbearable!

janetbellinger
02-02-2007, 07:26 AM
[qMy penmanship is unreadable too, even to me, but for poetry, I have to do it in longhand first.

uote=Shadow_Ferret;1081969]I find the longhand clique to be a little odd. Not that I like you guys any less, just that I can't really relate.

My penmanship is unreadable. Heck, even my signature is just a bunch of loops. And my thoughts start to get backed up when I write on paper. The ideas all start tumbling over each other like Keystone Cops out of the paddywagon.

That's why I type. I can at least keep them from stumbling over each other and they seem a little more respectful, waiting their turn as I type.[/quote]