- I don't have a laptop (and I'm too poor to buy one). And it's really hard to be limited to my desktop computer every time I want to write. Now I'll be able to write on the couch, by the pool, at the doctor's office, locked in my bedroom...
- I'm a perfectionist and a major editor while I draft. Now I'll be forced NOT to nitpick and edit. I'll keep moving forward and plowing through my draft faster. (Because getting to revisions is the fun part for me!)
- Along with being a perfectionist, I think writing a novel in longhand will help me realize, "Hey, it's okay that this story is a little messy right now," because it will actually look messy and not appear "printed," which always tricks me into thinking my first drafts will be/must be PERFECT. Hopefully this time I won't be so delusional.
- I'll be away from the distractions of the Internet. And my story won't be associated with all that my computer means to me: my day job, email, social media (which leads me to comparing myself to other, "better" authors). My notebook will mean my story and nothing else.
- It will infuse more soul into my novel. I'm convinced there's got to be some mystical connection between writing something by hand vs. typing it. It's like getting a handwritten letter in the mail rather than an email message. Writing longhand will feel more like art and less like business.
As you can see, I'm determined to see this through. Maybe I'll never draft a novel this way again, but I'm going to give it a go for this story.
And on that note, I just got back from Staples with the perfect notebook and supplies! See the pretty...
Here's what I got:
An Arc notebook from Staples*, complete with refills, an insert with sticky flag tabs, expander rings (they kinda look like discs), and little note inserts in case I need to jot down an idea of an addition or something that needs fixing on that page. I'm so excited about this system! It's customizable, expandable, and you can add or remove pages. It's like a glorified and durable spiral notebook. *I promise Staples didn't pay me to freak out about this.
A composition notebook for brainstorming about the book, a timeline for the story, a character Bible, etc.
Colored index cards for my handy-dandy rubber-banded outline system.
A very cool pen to be used only for writing this novel.
All in all, it was 35 bucks. Much cheaper than a laptop! (And I could've gone a lot cheaper, but I felt like splurging.)
So the plan is I'll spend the rest of June fleshing out my characters and story. (I've already beat it out, created my cast of characters, and done lots of research), and then come July I'll click my fancy pen, open my pretty notebook...and pray that inspiration comes!
FYI, here are some current authors who draft novels in longhand. Do you know of anyone else?
- J.K. Rowling
- Kristin Cashore
- James Patterson
- Beverly Cleary
- John Irving
- Anne Perry