Pencil and Paper versus Keyboard

“Wow. You actually write out your stories, first?”

Yes, I write. I mean that in both the creative sense and the physical one.  I wield my craft long-handed. That’s the best way to describe my Process. Pencil to paper–sometimes a pen might be used.

I know a bunch of writers that work their craft via the keyboard. And that is just fine. It works for them. For a person with my Process, I find it interesting to note that practically all of those writers are right-handed. I only know of a handful of Lefties who write that way, too. Again, this is perfectly okay for all of them. I’m cool with that and won’t try to change their Process. It’s just not for me.

Some people might consider what I do, this Process, as duplicating my work. I like to think of it as shortening the seemingly endless task of editing/revising. Many times I’ll self-edit while transcribing my pages to the computer: a forgotten word (usually caused by my brain going faster than I can get it all down) gets caught; a better way of turning a phrase hits me; or just plain extra text gets inserted. Other writers usually do all this after they’ve completed their work and start revising it on the back end.

I’m a Lefty. When I write long-handed, I feel like the words are channeled directly to the page from The Source. No need to filter through the Other Brain so both hands can type out my words. (Ha. Maybe that’s why I usually type one-handed. Or why my WPM is so mega slow with both hands…)

An interesting thing I’ve noticed about the words I’ve crafted via scribbling out my thoughts versus typing them out for the first time: nine times out of ten, those virgin-words are garbage. Sure, I’ll hit upon the occasional nugget of gold…but let’s face it, the majority of what’s written (typed) isn’t worth a thing.

Back to the Lefty-business. I should add that I’m a Purist. I do so little with my Other Hand I joke it’s for decoration; that I’d look weird with two left hands… maybe it’s because I am such a Purist, that my virgin-typed words stink 98% of the time.  I can sit with my hands hovering the keyboard and stare at the screen for ridiculous lengths of time. But the moment after i pick up a pen/pencil and place it to the paper, the words seem to just flood onto the page.

“Oh, that’s all in your head–a mental block!”

Believe me when I say that I’ve tried to convince myself this time will be different; my virgin-typed words WILL NOT SUCK….but, yeah. They usually do any way.

But it’s really okay. I write long-hand. This is my process.  It’s satisfying and it works for me.

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