It has come to my attention (and probably should have a long time ago) that I am way too dependent on my computer. Seriously, when my computer breaks down, so do I. Recently, I decided I’d like to change this, so I’ve committed to having one day a week be computer free. To make things fun, at the beginning of the week I literally roll a die to see which day it’s going to be.
I figured this way I could prove to myself that I can still be a functional and productive writer sans technology. So I gathered notebooks and post-its and highlighters and… well, to be honest I failed miserably the first time. It was a lot harder than I expected.
I tried to hash out some chronology issues in the trilogy, but quickly got stuck when I couldn’t open the actual document for reference. So then I tried writing one of the extra scenes I needed longhand, which went well, but took forever for me to actually get into a groove with it.
The second time was better. I planned ahead with more technology-free activities, but when I hit snags with them it was nearly impossible to recover. (aka – I’m supposed to write this additional scene longhand. But wait… did he tell them that crucial bit of backstory in the previous scene? I can’t turn on the computer to look it up. Therefore the world is over.)
Although I somehow feel like I’m cheating by planning my activities in advance. When the computer has a temper tantrum, I don’t have time to print off the things I want to edit or make notes on where I left off in a story.
I’m going to keep gnawing at this, because I think it’ll ultimately be really good for me to unplug once a week, but I could really use some suggestions. What kinds of things do you do when technology is unavailable? What are some writer-ly activities that don’t require actually sitting down and writing? And (for those of you who find writing longhand helpful) how do you do it without getting stressed?