Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Writing by Hand

I'm getting close to the climax of the novel, and the end of the journal I'm writing in, and I'm wanting to start entering it into Liquid Story Binder, but I'm so, so committed to finishing this in handwritten form, first.

You see, when I first started writing, I didn't have a computer, or even a typewriter. So I wrote by hand; even though my handwriting is atrocious (so utterly, utterly atrocious, as you can see in the picture) it was what I had.

When I started using a computer, my handwritten tendencies fell by the wayside, and I noticed that my prose actually sounded worse. I type SO fast that my fingers get ahead of my head, whereas with the handwritten work, it forced me to take the time to write it out, so my head stays well ahead of my fingers.

So went and bought a lovely little blank journal, and started writing by hand again. It's worked.
It's also easier to write distraction-free, since I can't surf the internet with a notebook. I lay down in bed, every night before I go to sleep, and write. Sometimes just a paragraph or two, sometimes, a few pages that keep me up until I finish the scene. Always something.

Here's my lovely little journal. Red isn't one of my favorite colors, ordinarily, but I really love the design of this one. I added the little brown ribbon as a sort of "handle", and also use it to distinguish mine from my husbands that he accidentally purchased independently in the exact same cover.

I scribble away, and feel so very writerly. The best part about it is that it fits in my purse, so I can take it with me wherever I go. I could write on the iPod touch, sure, but it would be tedious, and iPod would always be attempting to correct my spelling. Shapewriter's fun, but too difficult to use for any length of time. And I MUST have a Pilot Precise pen.I prefer V5, but ended up accidentally buying V7. Lines are thicker, but it still looks good, so I can use them.

So I need to finish out this novel, and one day, when I'm published and famous, this will be something I can show off at conferences as how I got my start. Who knows, maybe I'll be able to hock it on ebay for a few thousands bucks, eh?


shield maiden said...

My mother-in-law used to work in the archives at Marquette University. She said how one time that the school got some of Tolkien's papers for some time (I don't remember if she said it was for preservation purposes).

Anyway, she thought it was awesome seeing the rough drafts. She said that apparently the original name concept for Strider was "Trotter".

Once your a famous author maybe your journals will be traveling the globe and be talked about for generations to come :)!

Heather said...

Oh, I'm SO jealous of your MIL. I'll admit that Tolkien is part of my inspiration for this, although it's a bit retroactive; my original reason for writing this way is because I was too poor to afford technology to write on.

Now, though, it's such a pleasant way to write, that I've kept it up.

I do make notes here and there, things to change, worldbuilding notes to expand on, that sort of thing.

I can't wait to finish this thing, and look back to see my thought processes in the first stages.

Ana Marai said...

You have a bit of the opposite problem that I have. My mind works so fast and my handwriting is so slow that I can't keep up with my head. I have to type it or else my brain will jump so far ahead that I'll forget what I was thinking.

I want to start handwriting again, anyway. It's much more authentic to me.