29 May, 2019

Writing My Way to "The End"

Friends know that I'm writing what might be the world's first novel tap-typed on a tablet PC. (Calling it a zombie novel is on par with likening The Hunchback of Notre Dame to a romance novel.) I wrote how my typewriter crashed and burned in January, a catastrophe that left me no real choice than to use the JP5s tablet I blogged about receiving last year to finish the final draft of my novel-in-stories. That's exactly what I've been doing, these past four months, and it's been even more challenging than you might expect.

The JP5s has a seven-inch screen. Without my pinchy new nerd glasses, writing on it sometimes makes my eyes hurt. Never mind the slowness of dispensing with my lightning-fast keyboard skills in order to thumb the onscreen Android keyboard like a maniac. I might be getting carpal tunnel syndrome.

My tablet features no word processor program. That would be too much like right. Instead I've had to type hundreds of pages into JPay's proprietary e-mail app, which limits each e-mail to 6,000 characters — roughly two and a half typewritten pages. Special characters like ñ and é are for some reason deleted by the app when a message is sent. Worst of all, there's no spell check. Good thing I'm fastidious.

Nevertheless, the final draft is about twenty-five pages from being done. Oh, wait, make that twenty-seven. My finger slipped. I accidentally deleted an e-mail in my Drafts folder yesterday. In my defense, it was right above the e-mail I intended to delete, which was pointless and silly and had nothing at all to do with this nine-year project I'm striving to get done. There's no message-recovery option; gone is gone.

Today I retyped the missing bits, hoping like hell that I recall the good revisions I originally made. What I have now is pretty close to what was there before that errant finger did its thing. The zombies still kill pretty much everyone. It's all in a day's writing.

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