5 Replies to “The #2 Thing Stopping You From Writing Your Novel”

  1. Jennifer, yeah, you’re right — our computers themselves offer a lot of distractions. I get around this by writing all my first drafts on a typewriter. Not only does this completely eliminate the temptations of email, favourite websites, and so on, it also greatly lessens the urge to edit my writing. When my first draft is done, I type it into the computer using iawriter — which is one of those minimalist word processing apps — revising and editing as i go, so I end up with a soft copy that is actually my second draft.

    Part of the reason this works for me is because I grew up writing on typewriters. Personal computers didn’t become affordable until I was in my late teens and i didn’t own one until I was in my early 20’s. We’ll see whether my system works for something the length of a novel when we get into the Idea to Draft Intensive workshop, but I will add this for now: There is something addictive about writing on a typewriter; the noise, the physicality of making words appear, the rhythm — they all seem to combine to help shut out distractions. It’s a more immersive way of working for me.


    1. @Christopher I love that you use a typewriter! I have a slight obsession with vintage typewriters, but I don’t use one myself because I type so fast that I often have to backspace to correct errors, so for me it’d be a big mess LOL … Thanks for suggesting iawriter, it looks awesome. I am gonna have to download that for my Mac. (Anyone who wants to check it out can go here: http://www.iawriter.com/mac/)

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