Writers spend a lot of time getting their writing areas just so. We make them comfortable and pretty. We post calendars with deadlines and maybe magazine pictures of settings or characters. Some writers want to look at inspiring views outside their windows while others want no distractions. We try to make everything as conducive to creativity and productivity as we can.
Sometimes, it just doesn’t work.
The chair suddenly isn’t comfy or the sun shines too brightly. The Internet becomes too distracting or the heater is too loud. Whatever the problem is, you’ve got to find your way around it. My saving grace lately has been my AlphaSmart. It’s a no-frills, sturdy little plastic word processor that runs on batteries. Anyone who isn’t a writer laughs at the simplicity of this device, but most of my writer friends own one. There’s something about seeing only four lines of text that keeps you moving forward. The keys are loud and sticky, but they signal progress. There’s no access to email or YouTube. The only thing you can do with it is write. And write and write and write…
It’s the little things in life that make a person happy, and the best part of working with an AlphaSmart is hooking it up to your computer and watching the words upload, one letter at a time. Word count is the name of the game, folks, and my little Alphie is helping me get them.