Powered by Blogger.

What a Writer Should be Thankful For: Pen and Paper

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I decided to do a series on things the writer should be thankful for the entire week. We should be thankful for some of these things all year round actually, but for the sake of being in the spirit, I decided this week was the opportune week to do so. Anyway today’s thing that a writer should be thankful for

Pen and Paper

I don’t think people fully appreciate what pen and paper did, not to mention the easy accessibility and now the cheapness of it. But let’s think about it. Before pen and paper, stories were told orally, and if they managed to get written down, it was on yards and yards of stone tablets that you had to use a hammer and nail to chip away at like in the Flintstones. Not only would it be hell to write a novel, but hell for people to carry stone tablets around if that was the case. We’re not even talking about the fact that when these things were written in stone tablet, there was no printing press. So I wouldn’t write a book in a lifetime let alone a book in one year or three or four months.

But think if we were forced to do that, writers would have big strong arm muscles, not to mention there would be no such thing as an overweight writer, and I wouldn’t have to go running every day. Alas, we don’t have to because at the very least, everyone can afford pen and paper nowadays, so let’s talk about the benefits of such a thing as pen and paper.

Well, for one, nowadays it’s cheap. You can get a pack of cheap ink pens for a dollar (unless you’re like me and spend ten to twenty dollars on nice pens and if I had the cash, maybe more). You can find notebook paper for about fifty cents a pack, ten cents when the stores have overstocked the stuff at the end of the summer back to school sale. You can take it anywhere and no one is going say a word about it. Jot down sudden ideas in a notepad without looking rude for taking out your laptop or phone in the middle of a conversation. In the middle of class when you’re bored listening to your professor talk, you can write stories and play it off for taking notes. Not to mention no one cares about a piece of paper, so while someone might want to steal your laptop, no one is going to steal paper and cheap pens and if they do, that’s just sad and desperate. I’d give it away if someone asks.

The drawback? Don’t get this stuff wet or it becomes brittle and prone to mildew. And it burns, so keep this thing out of heat and away from fire. Also keep it away from children under the age of five and depending on how ‘terrible’ or hardheaded your child is, maybe even until about nine because nothing is worse than writing something and then a child coming to marker up, cut up, or tear up all that hard work. Also keep it away from the clean fanatic who will see old pieces of paper lying around and call it trash despite the fact that the front and back is covered, not to mention the husbands, wives, and other family members who will take your pieces of paper and write that important number or information in the margin of your work. And I dare you to try to write with pen and paper while driving. In fact, don’t do it if you value your life.

Overall though, if a writer has nothing else to be thankful for, pen and paper are definitely two things to be thankful for. It makes a writer’s life a lot easier.

  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS


Anne E. Johnson said...

Hurray for pen and paper! But I'd add another level of gratitute just for paper: While people graduated from stone tablets thousands of years ago, until the mid 15th century Europeans had to make books out of cured animal skin (vellum). Three cheers and a round of beers for the Chinese, who invented the making of paper, and for the explorers who brought the idea west!