Review – Basic Equipment

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Here’s a glimpse into history.

Not history as in “what happened during the Crusades,” or “Jonas Salk’s discovery of the polio vaccine,” or even any number of historical greats that some of us dozed off to in class.

This is a glimpse into the way things were before computers.

I grant you that right now, reading this on a computer or cell phone screen, it doesn’t seem to be quite right. Still, dissonance in the space-time continuum aside, this is a tried-and-true method of putting down ideas.

Don’t believe me? Think about it, the next time the internet goes out. You’ll be digging around for the paper bill from your ISP to call them and give them a piece of your mind. That is, if you don’t do your services through your cell phone.

About the only problems with using computers to compose is the notifications, the seductive lure of email, the clarion call of Google and Bing to look up this or that, and that link up in your bookmark bar to play a browser based game.

Johannes Gutenberg revolutionized the way words found themselves distributed in the 1400’s. Before then, it was carefully carved wooden blocks or even more carefully scribed letters. The common denominator for all of these was the surface for all the symbols. Clay tablets, or papyrus scrolls, fabrics, or paper.

And that is what I refer to, when I mention history.

There are times when I write that I don’t want to be bothered by the blinkenlichten and sounds. I just grab the pad and something to write with and go. I write faster this way and while there might be scratchouts or whatever, I get my ideas down. Writer’s block is often cured in this way.

Also, if I should get a new idea, I’ll scribble it down on the back of the page, or in the margins, and keep on truckin’ with the main event.

So, looking at Amazon, for instance, I found these pads. Plenty of paper to look at and think about what to put down.

And pads or notebooks are of no use whatsoever, if you don’t have anything to write with, so here are some tools to write with. Simple stuff, really, and there are certainly preferences to take into account here, but I would suggest these.

And, of course, these can be used for more than just writing the next bestseller.

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