I invested in a smartphone last week. I didn't get it for any literary purposes - it's for general convenience. It’ll be useful during the World Cup, and of course for keeping up with matches while I’m watching Aldershot next season.
(Yes, I know everyone else had a decent ‘phone years before I got dragged into the twenty-first century.)
Up to now I’ve only been able to make and receive calls and texts with my ancient ‘phone, so it’s all a bit of an eye-opener. However, seeing what technology can do has made me wonder whether it can help with my writing.
I'm not a great one for social media, so friends, family and followers can rest assured I’ll not be spamming you with continual status updates. But, I do have a lot of E-Mail exchanges with publishers and other writers, so it'll be good to know of acceptances (or rejections ), critiques and the like when I'm not at my desk. It’ll be brilliant not to have to go through the hassle of turning on the desktop before going to work every morning to see if anything has arrived from a publisher overnight.
I’ve always hated laptops but I can just about use the phone’s typing facility. I accept it’s small and fiddly, but I find I can get into a rhythm using cheap styli. Of course, this all means I can write anywhere. I can also produce in the living room with the family or while watching football on the box instead of shutting myself away in my office. I've been warned that word processing files aren’t secure, so I'm not using the ‘phone for erotica or slashers!
There are also peripheral advantages. I can take pictures now, which is helpful for this blog, or for Pinterest, etc. I've also been able to do some research 'on the go' – I've done some Internet research in my lunch hour during the day job, for example.
I’ve got more incentive to have my phone on and next to me as I write. That means I can have music on louder, instead of having to listen out for the family phone in another room.
I still violently dislike laptops. I think it's because the size doesn't suit me. The desktop in my office is still the centre of my writing world, but I do appreciate the extra flexibility my new toy gives me!