I am a technophile. I have a notebook and two netbooks, a tablet and a couple of Smartphones. I use apps to make my life easier, so I can record notes and memos. I save my files to a cloud based solution, as well as a portable hard drive, so I don’t need to worry about losing my memory stick or my computer. I have ‘phone reminders for virtually everything. And yet, I still always carry and pen and notebook with me. Why?
Well, for one thing, a pen and paper doesn’t freeze or crash (yes, the pen can run out of ink, but I usually have more than one. And a pencil.) It’s lighter to carry and I can buy notebooks in a variety of different sizes, depending on the size of the handbag I’m using. I don’t have to worry about logging back in if I’ve closed the cover on it. The battery doesn’t run out.
And yet, it is far quicker for me to type on a computer than it is to write longhand (especially as I touch type, and am quite fast). Editing is easier on a computer – those paper pages can get very messy with the repeated crossings out. And, actually, reading back what’s been written is easier on a computer – my handwriting isn’t neat at the best of times, and when I’m on a train, it’s very hard to make it look beautiful. Anyway, I’m not trying to write in copper-plate when I just want to get ideas down on paper.
I will confess, though, I’ve never got the hang of voice notes. I don’t like the idea of being out in public and saying “Jennifer” out loud to get someone’s telephone number, and I like the idea of recording my thoughts out loud even less. I’m not quite sure why.
So pen and paper or technology? It’s like the difference between wearing a skirt or trousers. Wearing red lipstick or pink. Eating chicken or fish. All perfectly reasonable choices, at different times. So, for me, there is no contest. None at all. They both have their place with me.
©Susan Shirley 2013