Monday, February 04, 2008

Good work comes from good tools

I'm becoming aware of how much difference a laptop has made in my writing. I've had it for a month now, and I didn't realize how much impact mobility would have; I've been writing on the couch upstairs, in the comfy chair in the living room, in bed, and pretty much anywhere else I want. The flexibility has helped a lot, both in getting myself to write and in my comfort while I'm typing. I'm also really liking the ergonomics of the slightly-curved keyboard, which is extremely comfortable to type on. It's an older laptop, and I had to do some repairs when I got it (it had been dropped, and I had to pop the case together and remount some internal components), but I'm extremely happy with it. It meets all of my needs, and it isn't packed with piles of features I won't use and don't care about.

When I sit down upstairs at the desktop computer, it's noticeably difficult to start writing. I had never known what a handicap the studio was until I was mobile and could write elsewhere. I think it's partially the environment; the studio is a wreck, stacked with projects I need to work on and things I need to clean up, and the space is cramped. It doesn't help that the big computer upstairs is the machine on which all of my games are installed. Writing isn't easy for me, and when I hit moments of difficulty I can hear Raven Shield calling me. Even if I don't cave in to the temptation, I'm aware it's there. The laptop is old enough that I can't play graphics-intensive games on it, and I've gone out of my way to not install any older games which it'll support.

I'm running Windows XP TabletPC Edition, but other than the OS I'm entirely Microsoft-free. I'm writing in OpenOffice and Zoho, surfing with Firefox, and running an open-source virus scanner. If Linux supported tablet computers, I wouldn't have even installed the original OS when I stripped it down and rebuilt it....

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