1. ellebell16
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    ellebell16 Member

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    Longhand vs. Typing

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by ellebell16, Nov 27, 2010.

    Which do you prefer? I'm struggling with the beginning of my story, and I don't know whether or not I want to type it out or write it. Whenever I try to type, I get distracted by the internet. Whenever I write it out longhand, I get hand cramps.

    Which is better/more effective?
     
  2. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    I use both at the start of a story sometimes I think better with pen and paper - however when I am in flow there is no comparison for me I type much faster.
     
  3. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    I cannot get anything done in longhand. I suck at actual "writing" stuff out. I type.
     
  4. Hartnell
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    Hartnell Member

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    I used to allways write with a pencil or a pen but these days I find it much easier to use a word programme. It is much easier to delete and edit stuff.

    And I find it works well for me.
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i do both... neither is 'better/more effective' for everyone... you must go by whichever way works best for you...

    that said, one benefit to writing out your work first is that it automatically gets a first proofread and edit as you type it up...
     
  6. Newfable
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    Newfable Senior Member

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    Hand cramps are a beautiful thing. ;)

    Personally, I'll write out any freewriting and practice that I do, and type out any other work that I produce. That's for fiction anyway. Depending on my mood, I may write out poetry and edit it on a computer later, but I'll always type out plays and screenwrites; all those stage directions can distract me from the ideas I'm trying to get across, so I gotta' get 'em out faster than my hand can produce.
     
  7. FrankABlissett
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    FrankABlissett Active Member

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    "...Whenever I try to type, I get distracted by the internet...."
    I hear you there! *looks at the other tab with a google.doc he was working on*

    Short of disabling internet on a computer or taking a laptop to a wi-fi dead zone, it's just going to take practice.

    Maybe you could set goals of one or two or three hundred words before checking in with your favorite sites and such.

    Personally, I use the computer whenever I can. Sometimes things come to me while I'm driving, at the store, etc so I'll jot on a bit of paper. Like to get it on the computer asap though. I just like moving things around, editing, un-editing, etc.

    -Frank
     
  8. Unit7
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    Unit7 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I have horrible hand writing. I don't think my handwriting has changed much since I was in like third grade. So I type whenever possible.

    I also feel that I can generally write better when I type instead of hand writing it. Everything flows better for me.

    Its also nice that I can actually read what I type. ;)
     
  9. Newfable
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    Newfable Senior Member

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    Insofar as typing whilst getting distracted by the Internet is concerned, I know and use a program that leaves the screen blank, save for the text you're typing, which is fantastic for getting rid of said distractions. It's JDarkRoom, or something-or-other, and there's versions for Mac and PC both.

    Just a thought, as I've faced the same problem myself in the past.
     
  10. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Depends what I'm writing. Song lyrics, always on paper first. Same thing when I used to write a lot of poetry.

    Anything longer, I use the computer.
     
  11. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    To get started, using a pen and paper can get that really powerful, creative opening out in ways that a word doc [often] never could. There's no "Great Blank Staring Word Doc" when you get your first paragraph or two onto paper with a pen.

    Typing has its advantages though..obviously, it's much faster, but you can also get more in...when you're transferring your handwritten stuff to the screen, it kind of expands on its own because typing is physically easier/faster. You might not be inclined to spend an extra whole page or two solely building tension if you have to write it all out with hand cramps.
     
  12. Klogg
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    Klogg Member

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    I use longhand to put down my general ideas because they don't seem to strike when i'm sitting at the computer waiting for inspiration. When I am actually writing the story, I type. No hand cramps and less paper for me to lose (which I inevitably do). I just make sure to unplug the internet so I can get something done.
     
  13. erik martin
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    erik martin Contributing Member

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    I really like writing with pen and paper. I frequently write rough drafts of short stories by hand and parts of novels. Any time I get stuck, it helps me to pull out a notebook and pen and start scratching. Right now I am doing the second draft of a short story by hand (the rough is on the computer.) as it is supposed to be the last handwritten account left by my MC. I am finding actually doing it by hand is helping to bring out my voice in the story.
     
  14. Midnight_Adventurer
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    Midnight_Adventurer Active Member

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    I do both. I find writing out a section of my novel gives me a chance to do a quick edit when I type it up, plus I have a hard copy of what I've written. Although my collection of notebooks is getting rather large...and confusing.
     
  15. ApplesNSkullz
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    ApplesNSkullz New Member

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    I prefer typing because I like to imagine what my writing would look like if it was published. It gives out kind of a formal vibe, sort of making my writing look 'official'. It gives me a feeling of accomplishment. Writing by hand is nice every now and then, but I find that it's easier for me to lose focus that way. I don't know why, it just does. Everyone's different.
     

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