Why I’m still using a typewriter

People always smile when they see an old-fashioned typewriter on my desk. It’s a portable Olivetti Lettera 22 in excellent condition. I bought it for about 15 dollars at an antique market, ordered a box of ribbons from eBay and I have written many, many pages since.

I do use a computer for editing and layout, but for first drafts and getting thoughts down on paper, nothing beats the good old typewriter. Maybe handwriting – many writers still prefer  writing longhand – but I can’t stand my own handwriting.

Some advantages of writing on a typewriter:
  • No distractions (the most important one).
  • The feeling of creating something tangible.
  • Editing and adding notes with a pencil.
  • Separating the drafting stage from editing stage.
  • Composing a line before committing it to the page.
  • I feel like I’m ‘working’, it’s more physical.
  • The smell of typewriter oil.
  • The result doesn’t disappear in zeros and ones somewhere on a disk.
  • No power cord or batteries to keep charged.
  • No glare when sitting outside.
And the one that I like best: “Look, what I’m typing appears immediately on the paper! No need to print…or sync notes, find cables, pair blue tooth or refill printers with low toner…”

A step back in time can be a step forward in productivity.

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