A writer’s confession: I don’t know how to type.
August 23, 2010
While I’ve written four novels, dozens of short stories, probably thousands of ads, as well as maintained three blogs, I’ve done it all with basically one finger: the index on my right hand. Yes, I use the left index finger to mark punctuation but the other digit taps out all the words.
Crazy, huh? It’s not that I prefer longhand; I don’t. Though I wrote the initial drafts of my first two novels with pen and pencil I quickly migrated to laptops when those became available.
In college I wrote in notebooks or on a typewriter nicked from my father. Back then I was a drinker and a smoker and I used my left hand to do that and my right hand to work. God knows what my brain was doing but that’s how I functioned.
As time went by I stopped drinking and smoking cigarettes (though I still puff cheap cigars) but I never learned to type properly. That’s not to say I didn’t evolve; I did. I certainly memorized the keyboard. Subsequently, my finger tapping became faster and faster. I never timed it but when I’m in the zone I can probably hammer out forty or fifty words a minute, maybe more.
As cell phones became more versatile I began using them the same way. Though Blackberry’s keyboard is made for traditional typing I use the one-finger approach there as well.
This likely is stupid behavior but it won’t change. I’ve gotten too competent in my dysfunctional approach to bother learning the proper method.
Oddly, I don’t know a single person who types like I do. All of you seem to engage your keyboards properly. Even you non-professional writers. Am I wrong about this? If so, let me know. I’m curious: Am I the only one-fingered typist who is not a child or a monkey?