After a writing hiatus of quite a few months longer than I intended, I’m back to work on what I will refer to as “the book.” I knocked out another 500 words yesterday, and expect to make that the standard day’s output. But since I’ve had these productive impulses before, and since they tend to expire after about a week, I’m employing a few other strategies.
First: A new computer! Yep, I have decided that there are too many games on my desktop machine, it’s too noisy, and it confines me to one room of the house. So I ordered a new notebook computer from Dell. It’s their new 1420 model. Should be here in a couple more weeks — although you never know with Dell — and then the only files I’ll transfer from my old computer to the new one are my in-progress writing projects.
I know what you’re thinking: Basically, I’m offering myself a cheap bribe to a commit to a project that will probably take a year — long after the shiny new computer ceases to become a toy and starts looking more like an albatross. Yeah, I guess I am. I certainly don’t need a new computer. But you know what? I’m going to consider this as good an excuse as any.
One other thing: Since this new machine comes with no word-processing program on it, I’m going to finally give Open Office.org a try. I’ve been using it some at work, and as far as I can tell it does everything Word does. And it’s free. Bill Gates doesn’t need any more of my cash, right?
So, a new computer and a new word processor. This book will practically be writing itself!
I have a new laptop, and the sucker has been a help, believe it or not. I was able to spend an hour or so each night blogging on my recent vacation, and the growth of wireless hot spots has made it easier to write during time when I’d just be hanging around drinking coffee.
And, yes, no word-processing programs on the new Vista operating system. I guess poor Bill Gates decided that including word-processing programs with previous operating systems was depriving him of much-needed cash.
Detectives Beyond Borders
“Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home”
Dave Knadler says
Glad to hear you say that. Truth is, I’ve grown sort of envious of my wife’s laptop. Since she’s using it all the time, I have to get my own unless I want to log all my writing time in this stuffy office.
Have you tried Google docs and spreadsheets? I’ve given that a wee try, and I’ve been quite impressed. I am wondering whether to try it out on our typesetters to see what they make of it — would be great to be able to get away from Word and all its irritating spurious code.
Dear Mr. Knadler,
Congratulations on your new Dell. If you have not received your order yet, please feel free to contact me directly at the email address below. I am happy to check the status for you.
Dell Customer Advocate
Sally Crawford says
Hi, inspired by Patry Francis’s post about her summer office and your post on the usefulness of your coming peripatetic laptop (I love that comment ‘This book will practically be writing itself!’) I whizzed straight off and bought a second hand IBM ThinkPad (not wireless though).
Now, as soon as I can get it to work properly . . . :)),
out in the yard I will be, with the cats, the laptop umbilically linked up the stairs to the hallway, finishing my novel.
Ah, cool drink to hand, etc.
Dave Knadler says
Hi Sally. Well, a new computer certainly can’t hurt, right? I love mine (it just arrived yesterday) and this Open Office is working great.
Good luck on that novel! (as if luck has anything to do with it…)
Sally Crawford says
Well done on getting that Dell (the digital life leaves us short on patience).
And oh, the power of the blog.