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Last Week’s WW: Story Vs Storytelling

I’ve mentioned before that when I was in high school, I used to carry around a journal and write my stories in it in between classes.  I suppose I was anti-social.  Still am.  Sometimes, when I got home from school, my mom would ask me if I had gotten any phone numbers.  The answer was usually no.  But hey, change schools 11 times, and making friends either gets really easy or really hard.  For me, it was the latter.

But little did I know, those journals were the start of something.  Something other than my cubital tunnel.    They were the start of my life-long love of writing.  It was this strange time in our recent history, when computers and the internet were just hitting their stride.  Writing things by hand was still the main way for most things.  Laptops were unheard of.  At least for me.  Kind of like cell-phones.

One of my earliest computer based fiction, was going into SciFi (it was spelled that way then) Channel’s chat room, and role playing/writing Sliders Fan Fiction.  I was a dork.

The first novel I wrote, Nightfall: Wolf’s Moon, I wrote on my computer.  It was the first laptop I had ever owned, and it was a beast.  I have no idea how heavy that thing was, but I compare it to modern computers and it’s easily 2-3 times the bulk.  At that point, I was convinced that I could only write 1000 words a day, and I could only do it starting at 1 AM.

It was a few years before I started working on the next novel.  I started using Celtx and wrote a pilot and some spec scripts in between.  Just for fun.  Why not?

I got a tablet for my computer (not the stand alone kind, the touch with a stylus kind).  It came with some drawing software.  So I thought, hey, I’m going to write a children’s book.  Less then a week later, I had: Once In A While, Everyone Loses.  I did the art and the story.

The next novel, Otherworlders, I hammered out quickly on my laptop.  Mostly while sitting at Panera or Corner Bakery and drinking far too much coffee, which, up to that point, I hadn’t cared for.

My flash fiction started the long hand way.  I would write on the bus and at work, then type it up later.  But writing it twice got tiring.  Although, it did keep everything from being first draft status at posting like it normally is.  But now, I write it on my computer.

Skyland and Windchasers were written in Scrivener.  I still use Word for a thesaurus and grammar checking.  But otherwise, it’s Scrivener.  I now use it for my Flash Fiction, too.  As well as my weekly serial Dealt.

I can’t wait to start on my next project, Submerbia.  It’ll be book 3 of my Skyland Saga.  (These stories need better names).  Well, I guess I can wait to start.  Because Friday I get my new computer!  I spent a little more then I wanted to, but my day job is finally working out, so at least I had it to spend.  I got a Lenovo G510s.  I agonized over what computer to get, scouring the internet for the best deal.  Last night, I ordered the regular g510 from Lenovo’s website directly.  But then, it said that it was going to take a month at least to get it to me.  And when I read the reviews on their shipping, I knew I had made a mistake.  I found that one on Amazon, canceled the other, and am super glad that I did.  This computer has everything I wanted (besides a graphics card.  But can’t have it all.  Not at my price point).

I also have my desk now.  Which is great.  It’s a nice place to write.  Although, I have to say, I still prefer going to coffee shops to write.  There’s endless coffee.  But mostly, I like it because it’s a distraction free environment.  Sometimes they limit how long you can be on the internet.  Keeps you honest.

I look forward to the day when I can just imagine a story and the bulk of it transfers instantly into a computer, where I can add to and edit it from there.  But, who knows when that’ll happen?

The way we write changes.  But be it in a journal, on a bus, on a computer the size of a brick, in a coffee house, or by thinking really loud, it doesn’t matter.  As long as we’re writing.