Charles Dickens had a pen he used for each book. You know, back in the day when authors wrote out their manuscripts longhand with pen and ink-- yikes! Dickens would not use his authoring pen to write letters, or to write bills or notes or any of the other daily writing he had to do. He didn't want to contaminate it, or muddy the waters, or confuse creative writing with business-type writing.
This really makes me think. I use my laptop for EVERYTHING. Emails for business, friends and family. Blogging. Research. Business-- creating fliers, press releases, and all that. And every so often, I whip over to wordperfect to sneak in a few hours of creative writing on my current novel. Which often seems distracting, confusing and just plain wrong. At least according to Charles Dickens. And maybe according to me. The switch from blogging to writing to business to casual emailing gets blurry and I'm not sure it allows me to plumb the depths of my creativity.
My last two, (or is it my first two?) books were written before I had internet on my laptop. So I'd check my email on a different computer, the one in my husband's office, and use my laptop solely for working on my manuscripts. That was also before I started blogging. My routine was open laptop, go to ms., start writing. Now it's open laptop, check email, check blogs, comment on blogs, and then I also do outside work on it as well. Is my writing suffering? I'm not sure yet. We'll see what my first reader says of this draft, and we'll see how revisions go. But I'm definitely thinking about Charles Dickens' pen.
How about you? Do you use the same computer for creative writing as you do for business and personal work? Do you sit at the same desk? Do you think this might be a problem? Or do you, like Charles Dickens, have a separation between pens/computers/creative writing and other writing purposes?
"Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in." ~ Louise Brown
"Write something to suit yourself and many people will like it; write something to suit everybody and scarcely anyone will care for it." ~Jesse Stuart
"A writer's job is to take one thing and make it stand for twenty." ~ Virginia Woolf