It’s the start of another year and the Muses have already started asking me about my ‘resolutions’ (same as last year really, make it to 2017 with everything intact) but it did get me to thinking. Over the festive period, I’d seen an article or two making the rounds with the daily word counts of famous (and infamous) authors and there are some pretty phenomenal numbers on those list. Whilst I acknowledge that most, if not all, were full-time writers, it made me consider my own productivity and how to maximise my writing time.
Technology has come in leaps and bounds over the last decade. We’ve never been more connected than we are now and I’m sure many of us received a welcome gift of a tablet, smartphone, or something else with flashing lights and buttons. All this technology provides us writers with so much more than the ability to stream funny cat memes directly to our armchairs and, to paraphrase the Webbed Wonder, with great tech comes great opportunities.
So, I hear you cry, how will my phone/tablet/smart TV make me a better writer?
1. Dead Time
There’s nothing worse than waiting. All that dead time lost standing in line, sitting in waiting rooms, waiting for your significant other to just try on one last item of clothing. Use that dead time to boost your word count. Write using your phone or tablet’s built-in keyboard, write on the back of your hand if you have to. At worse, you’ll look like everyone else playing Candy Crush.
2. Commutes and Car Rides
A tablet/phone and a word processing/note taking application are perfect for jotting down all your thoughts on those long, dreary commutes. Throw in a Bluetooth keyboard and you’re typing at your normal pace. Most of these keyboards are small enough to fit in your bag and many integrate into the tablet/phone’s case.
3. Go Hands Free
Audio recorders and voice reminder applications are exceptionally useful when your hands are being kept busy by other things. Many of them come bundled with transcription software which, while not 100%, is pretty accurate on the fly.
4. Old School
For the technologically-challenged among us or those who simply prefer to kick it up old school, you too can maximise productivity by keeping a pocket notebook and pen secreted about your person for just such an occasion.
P.S. I lied about the Smart TV. The only way that’ll help is by switching off Netflix.