I do love technology, and the things that it allows us to do. I just spent about an hour cleaning up around ten pages of prose that I had written with a typewriter and scanned with my phone so that I could add them to a couple of manuscripts I'm working on. How great is that? I can use an old manual machine to slap ink onto the page, working with the satisfying ka-chunk of the keys as I hammer away at them and the beautiful single-mindedness of a task performed without any notifications popping up over my work, knowing that I can use the small computer in my pocket to digitize those words so that they can be manipulated and replicated infinitely.
What a world we live in.
Sometimes I can't help but wish I could be a writer in a different time. I think of the gritty, ink-splattered times when writing and rewriting, cutting and pasting, those were literal descriptions of the work you had to do as a writer. You had to pick up a pen, be it a fountain pen or even a quill, and put ink on a page, knowing that if you spilled your coffee on it or you lost that sheet it was gone forever. No backing up your manuscript, no recovering that chapter you'd been working on all week and just lost.
Then, I pull out my tablet and make notes in the margin of a manuscript with what might as well be a magical pen that slides across the screen like butter and watch it turn my (some might call...) illegible handwriting into perfect little characters, leaving me with notes and revisions and even a new chunk of prose I can slip right into the manuscript with, not even the click of a button, but a couple taps with my finger.
Does this not sound like some kind of wizardry to you?
This is a great time to be a writer. We have the broadest spectrum of tools available. We can use a pen, pencil, typewriter, computer, tablet, or phone, knowing that whichever implement we use we can find a way to implement all the benefits of the digital age to our work. I love being able to work in whatever medium I want whenever I want to; sure, there might be some productivity lost in playing with all the different tools available, but I think we're living in a time when we get to enjoy our writing in a way that has never before been available to writers.
Sometimes this can seem like a real grind, but I am going to try and remember that I am lucky to be living and writing in this modern day and age.
Even if it means I can't strike up a written correspondence with Hemingway or Fitzgerald... I guess we'll never have it ALL...