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Novels on a Typewriter

Would you rather write your novels on a typewriter using only two fingers, or only hand write them? Is neither a choice? Can I pick “none of the above”? Those answers don’t work for me, and here’s why.

A lot of people seem to have this nostalgia for typewriters. They romanticize them I’m old enough that I grew up using them high school and college. In middle school we had typing classes, so I know how to use them properly. I remember how annoying the CLACKITY CLACK CLACK gets after a while. The need to change ribbons periodically, and get ink on your hands. Not to mention having to retype the whole manuscript, all of it, every word of every page, when after you’d edited it. No thanks.

Novels on a Typewriter

I’ll still take a typewriter, marginally, over hand-writing everything. Here in my dotage I have arthritis. Even when I was younger I’d still get cramps in my hand after writing too long. Yes, I’ve done the “let’s fill yellow legal pads with my brilliance” thing, mainly to try and avoid having to retype an entire manuscript. First draft by hand, edited second draft on a typewriter, worst of both worlds. My fingers hurt just thinking about it.

We have technology for a reason. Things are better now. Thank the fates for laptops and word processing software.


The Merry Writer is a writer’s game on Twitter run by Ari Meghlen (@arimeghlen) and Rachel Poli (@RPoli3). Each day there’s a new question, and each month there’s a new theme. In these posts I expand upon the answers that I’ve posted on my Twitter.

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