I know computers are convenient and wonderful, but if you ever find yourself in a creative slump, here are five reasons to shut the laptop and write your story by hand.
1. No internet
According to this study, American social media users spend over three hours per day on social networking sites. Think about that...over three hours. That's around 3,000 words per day you could write during the time you spend social networking—we're not even talking about Netflix, Youtube, and the plethora of other time-wasters available online.
Sometimes even having the internet available—even if you have the wifi on your laptop turned off—can be enough to deter the creative process.
2. Your Handwriting Style
Your creative writing is like no one else's. So is your handwriting. It reflects your style and your personality, and seeing your unique words written in your unique hand adds to the feeling you get after creating something unique and personal. After all, that feeling is why most of us write to begin with.
3. Narrative Pace
Pacing in a story can be a difficult thing to control. If you find your prose droning on, writing your first draft by hand can help. Slowing down the rate of writing will help you to naturally quicken the pace of the narrative.
4. A New Perspective
How many times have you heard of taking a long walk as a cure for writers block? Part of that cure is relaxing your mind and giving yourself a break. Part of it is just about change—a change of scenery, a change of thinking. Switching from digital to old school can give you that same kind of change and let you see your story in a new way.
5. Feeling of Pen and Paper
There's just something about pen and paper that feels good. Anyone who handwrites stories will tell you that the specific pen and paper matter. For me, it's Sharpie pens and a nice leather-bound journal. For some people, it's ball-point pens and a legal pad. It's whatever works for you, whatever makes you want to write.
Next time the words feel like they're stuck somewhere inside of you, shut off the laptop, grab your writing utensil of choice, and do it the old-fashioned way. Write in swirly cursive or cramped chicken scratch. Write quickly and passionately or slowly, tasting each word. Remember the way the words look scrawled out in ink, and give them a chance to remind you what it felt like to pen your first story on lined notebook paper.
What do you think? Do you like going old school when the words stop flowing?