Way back in April, I posted a snippet of my handwritten scrawl, lamenting the reliance of a lot of writers on technology. Well, I’m about to do a complete U-turn and announce that this entry was written on a Netbook, while I enjoyed a mocha and a chocolate muffin in a particular coffee store that shall remain nameless as I don’t want to advertise them (even though the gentleman barista did make a damn fine mocha).
My Netbook is great. I bought it so that I had something far more portable than my laptop in order to write during my commute to and from work. That’s a good forty minutes of just sitting there, which I considered to be writing time wasted since my handwriting is entirely illegible when done on a moving train. My Netbook makes sense. I type faster than I can write, illegibility is no longer an issue, I can work on stories I’ve already started on my laptop (typing directly into a document is a lot easier than scribbling on a print out) and I save oodles of time by writing my blog posts on here and then uploading them when I get somewhere near an Internet connection. Typing out what I’ve written by hand just seems to be a waste of time.
I actually feel more productive, too. I wrote the next instalment of my web serial during my morning commute (which is far more satisfying than simply completing the sudoku in the paper), and I made my edits to my contribution to the Chinese Whisperings anthology during lunch. Now I’m writing this over dinner (yes, my dinner is a coffee and a muffin) and I intend to start work on the short story for my title swap with my good friend Sophie Bowley-Aicken on the way home. How’s that for a day’s work?
If you’re interested, I got myself an Asus Eee PC 1001ha netbook. I love it. It’s small and light, and it has a very comfortable keyboard. It’s also got an Intel Atom processor, meaning it zips through tasks in no time at all, and the LED backlit screen makes reading what I’m writing a doddle. It’s not too brilliant at playing back videos I’ve downloaded from the BBC to watch on iPlayer, but I do that so infrequently, it’s not even an issue. As a laptop, it would probably be a poor investment, but as a Netbook, it’s fine. Why would I want to run Adobe CS3 on a Netbook when I already own a laptop? No, this is my digital notebook that allows me to access the Internet. Can’t say fairer than that.
I think it’s fair to say that I’m converted. Now I can write in public. Doesn’t that make me a real writer?