Thursday, July 06, 2006

Write On Your Notebook

In this age of laptops, thumb drives and pocket PCs, most writers still find themselves lugging a small notebook and a pen wherever they go. Technology is good but, so far, no gadget has provided the joy of seeing your thoughts flow through a pen’s ink and making an imprint on a clean sheet of paper. It’s like seeing a tangible proof of your written work.

Get a cheap notebook and a smooth-writing pen from the stationery store and begin writing. Write about the smell of dried fish that comes out from your neighbor’s window every morning. Write about the old lady who sits on the yellow park bench at 3 p.m. every day. Write about your first sexual experience. Write about things that frustrate you. Go out and listen to conversations at the supermarket. Write down your observations and ideas in longhand. You will have ample time with your keyboard later.

Natalie Goldberg wrote in Thunder and Lightning:

“Pressing keys is a different physical activity from writing by hand. A slightly different angle of mind comes out, not better or worse, only different. But … don’t ever lose your ability to hand-write — someday you may not be able to pay your electric bill or you’ll be in the woods by a stream and want to write, or like me, at a library or cafĂ©. Even though we drive a car, we can’t forget how to walk. The same is true with a computer. It’s still good to stay in touch with the clutch of a pen and the texture of a paper.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting site. Useful information. Bookmarked.

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