Writing a Speach with Pens and Pencils

I used to do public speaking. I’m reluctant to say what the subject was because it’s spiritual and has nothing to do with the subject here;

When was the last time you wrote something substantive — a letter, a story, a journal entry, etc. — by hand? Could you ever imagine returning to a pre-keyboard era?

It takes hours to write a 30 minute speech. There was an outline, a formula to follow which I used as a template for the subject.

I had taken a creative writing course a few years before so I had learned how to organize notes and ideas to put together a finished ‘talk’. At that time computers were just coming into homes. They were the latest gadget;  about half the students in the class had one but they weren’t considered necessary for the course.

I remember the teacher saying asking ‘what is the worst thing about using the computer?’   They all agreed: once you have ‘erased’ something, its gone for good. Many times in editing you realize the line you crossed out with a pen is better than the change.

Ever forget to ‘save’ something on the computer after writing a long piece? It takes a few times before you get wise and it becomes a habit. I saved pages of stuff I wrote on paper that I didn’t use but would fit in other talks.  I might have deleted it on computer.

There is also the 3-dimensional aspect of organizing notes. I would have a bunch of papers laid out to put it all together, even cut and paste literally with scissors and scotch tape.

When it was done I would type it up on my fancy typewriter. (oops! not pre-keyboard!) It had a little screen showing the line you were typing for editing but only one line at a time and editing meant backspacing and re-writing. Afterwards I would pencil in directions (pause and look out) and do last minute changes.

The worse thing I remember was writing for hours then reading  out loud what I had written and it would be 10 minutes of talking. That’s when I’d go looking for quotations in books and write them out longhand. Wow….. now that I think of it…. a computer would have been awesome!

Nowadays I don’t do a lot of writing, only here on WordPress. If you’ve followed my blog you’ll know left a my old life behind at 55  and started again. Now I’m 62 and still starting…. what? I’m not sure.

That’s why I write!

In response to https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/pens-and-pencils/

 

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