Somewhere in the Southeast I am being unusually low tech. And probably feeling a little anxious.
I’m on the Christmas tour—seeing friends and family before heading back home for the big day.
My cell phone? It’s broken. Verizon Wireless has ordered a part for it. I won’t be able to get this part until Christmas Eve. I have a feeling that the Verizon Wireless store is going to be nuts on Christmas Eve, but I will be there, broken cell phone in hand.
I hate phones. But I love texting. I’m much better with words than I am in conversation…and texting means that I’ve avoided having a phone conversation.
On my Christmas tour I will frequently be internet-free.
It’ll be an adjustment. :)
It’s amazing how quickly technology has become important to me. I still remember the old typewriter days (I typed papers in college, even.)
Writing can be low-tech. That’s the amazing thing about it. You can write on old notebooks or even receipts (I’ve done that when really desperate before.)
But high-tech stuff for writers is fun, too. My favorite tools for writing:
Google: I love Google. I may love Google too much—I can get distracted when researching something. Nowadays I just mark the spot in my manuscript that needs researching and keep on writing.
Check out the Google Guide. Here are some of the more-useful search tips (excerpted right from the guide):
salsa –dance the word salsa but NOT the word dance (that’s a minus sign before the ‘dance.’)
castle ~glossary glossaries about castles, as well as dictionaries, lists of terms, terminology
define:imbroglio definitions of the word imbroglio (or whatever word you’re looking up) from the Web
I also am a big Microsoft Word fan. Their word processing program beats the typewriter all to pieces.
Need some shortcuts to work through your manuscript quicker?
Useful Keyboard Shortcuts for Microsoft Word:
CTRL N :quickly opens a new document (great for those times you want to jot down a note, but keep writing on your current scene.)
CTRL end :moves the cursor to the end of a document (when you suddenly want to change your ending)
CTRL home :moves the cursor to the beginning of a document (when you suddenly want to change your beginning.)
CTRL E :Center a paragraph
CTRL Z : Undo (I use that one a LOT.)
CTRL 2 : Double space lines CTRL 1 : Single space
These are shortcuts that I find the most useful for me, but there are many more. If you’re interested, there’s a shortcut list for Word and one for Windows in general. If you’re on a Mac, their website lists some helpful shortcuts, too.
Do you go through technology withdrawal? Have any techie tips and tricks for us?