Tech Talk: The New Age of Writing
Writing is all about communication. The desire to form a connection between the topic and the writer, or the writer and the audience is always prevalent, even if the writer is not aware of it. Over the years, writing has evolved into a complex and fascinating art form that has benefited from advancements in fields such as education and technology. By focusing on these advancements, it becomes clear that writing is indeed a vehicle for establishing important connections.
Technology has changed my writing, specifically my creative writing, in numerous ways. I no longer write short stories by hand in five-subject notebooks the way I used to as a teenager, which comes with many problems such as hand cramps, smudging, and the inability to make mistakes if I write in pen. I hate disarray, especially when writing, so looking at scribbled out words or white-out stains is very upsetting. Therefore, the advantage of technology and having my own laptop has changed my writing habits because I find typing faster, easier, and relaxing. I am also able to erase mistakes with a simple, clean click of the delete button, which I find very satisfying.
The existence of blogging and other internet modes of writing are an advantage as well because I am able to experiment with different tones and audiences; knowing that someone can potentially click on a link and read what I have written is exciting, a big change from the handwritten stories lying ignored in my bookcase. Writing for the CWE blog and completing assignments gives me the opportunity to comment and communicate with my colleagues, to experience their writing styles, and to learn more about them as writers and people. I see this as a technological advantage because it has helped us become more connected and establish stronger friendships with each other.
While I am on the subject of technology and how it establishes connections between people, the existence of Google-docs, university modules like Canvas, and the online appointments we schedule with writers at the CWE are three amazing advantages that have changed my writing habits. Through these modes, I am able to access writing from any location, which helps me conduct research, brainstorming, and assignments in a more efficient manner. These modes are also beneficial for consultants and educators because they can provide feedback or assistance to students without having to schedule an in-person meeting, which may not always be convenient due to people’s busy schedules. Technology helps bridge these gaps between time and space.
Of course, while technology is often considered an advancement, there have been times when it has hindered my writing habits as well. Wifi is a fickle creature and is often illusive in my house. I am not the type of person who can take my laptop to a coffee-shop or bookstore and write amongst others; I am too easily distracted by noise and people-watching. Therefore, when the connection fails, I am often forced to revert to my old-school style and reconnect with my handwritten roots. Technology also comes with added stress regarding battery-life, having a charge cord, remembering to save every few minutes to avoid losing everything, and the potential for malfunctions or crashes, among other fears.
While it is important for people to experience the art of writing with pen and paper, and to be aware of the many circumstances that come with relying on technology, I truly believe that technological advancements such as laptops, blogging, Google-docs and Canvas, and making online appointments in writing centers are worth more than living in a society without them.