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October 16, 2007

The pageness of the page

I’ve been thinking about this conversation from Baby Got Books, regarding the effect of the internet and computers upon the art we create, and the ideas we generate. And I’ve realized that for me the computer is not so much a new medium, but simply an extension of a pen and paper. That though my computer is infinitely valuable for revisions and alterations, when it comes time to begin a new draft, I always make a brand new document. Retyping out my previous work is more time-consuming, but the new page’s blankness allows for so much more possibility. Also, that when I write, I keep my document small, at nearly 100% so I can see my whole document on the screen. I need my page to look like a page, as it would were it stuck inside a typewriter, so that I can see where I am at. For me, the pageness of the page remains essential, and still has yet to be replaced.

5 thoughts on “The pageness of the page”

  1. patricia says:

    Definitely food for thought.

    I can’t hold back – I’m dying to know what your response is to Christie Blatchford’s take on blogs in Saturday’s Globe. Or perhaps, it’s not even worth generating a rebuttal? That’s certainly my feeling on the subject…

  2. Kerry says:

    I’ve been thinking about it actually, and was planning to write something tonight. Though my response might be surprising. I have a strange attachment to Christie Blatchford that no one else I’ve ever met has confessed to.

  3. Steven W. Beattie says:

    Blatch wrote about blogs? How did I miss that one?

    Kerry, don’t you find your writing changes from the page to the screen? When I write longhand (which I do less and less these days), my sentences tend to be longer, with many more subordinate clauses, semicolons, etc. My onscreen writing is more clipped, terser. … Maybe it’s just me.

  4. Tim says:

    What I like about writing electronically (especially on my blog) vs. on paper is that I am much less likely to lose my writing. I also look at my writing on paper as more of a doodle or outline for what I commit to the screen. I really like that I can not only access but find what I’ve written in the past years and months. I just don’t hang on to paper that well.

  5. Kerry says:

    What I like (best) about writing electronically is that the font is not my handwriting (which always changes from okay to a scrawl as my document progresses).

    Steven– You know I don’t think I’ve written enough on paper recently to really decide whether or not my writing changes. I don’t think it does, but then the indelibility of ink keeps me from revising, and that’s bound to have an effect.

    Tim: True paper gets lost, but then at least when you lose them they are somewhere. Perhaps my biggest complaint with online docs is their propensity to disappear into thin air.

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