Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Inky Thoughts

There is something very old world and romantic about writing with a pen. Although most of us now write with our keyboards, the verb write essentially means using a pen -- or pencil to form characters on a material in order to record an event, thoughts, emotions or information. But in the world of tablets and laptops the pen and paper have been reduced to being the tools of  school kids only. For even in colleges they prefer printed assignments or soft copies -- they do not want to waste paper I am told.

And why not? typing on the tablet or a laptop is far more convenient than scribbling with pen and paper: you do not need to carry anything, you can edit, delete and even share it instantly and you can write anywhere -- while travelling, shopping, having coffee, waiting for the auto. In order to use a pen however, you need a pen, and paper and space. And of course there is the hassle of transferring the writing on the computer or laptop, formatting and editing it. Not only is the process time consuming but also repetitive. So why write, when you can type?

Last evening, I found out why: for the past one week, I have been working diligently on a post -- nothing profound, nothing philosophical, just a simple thought. But I am yet to make sense of it, even though, in my mind I am clear about what I want to say and how I want to say it, I have been unable to. For the last seven days, I have been writing and re writing the same five hundred words each night and deleting them each afternoon, but it still makes no sense. The whole process has been frustrating, to say the least. 

So last evening, after working through the afternoon and achieving nothing out of it, I gave up. I shut the computer and picked up a book to read. Inside the book I found a couple of folded sheets, it was something I had written while I was at home last week and in my quest to write the perfect piece, had forgotten completely about it. 

I immediately logged back in and started to copy the content, and somehow unlike the posts I write directly on the blog site, this one was almost error free and needed very little editing. While my usual posts take hours just to edit, I completed this in less than an hour -- start to finish. A short, short story written by a humble pen on an old notepad, on my old bed, in my old room, in my old house. 

P.S: Today I opened the unwritten piece again, and again it made no sense. I quickly picked up my most brilliant pen and most beautiful notebook and put together this post -- in thirty minutes flat.  

Tomorrow, I plan to rewrite my unfinished post one last time -- with the pen.

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