The fear of judgment can be crippling enough to make you not want to do anything at all. The last thing you want to do as a writer is live in fear of other people’s judgment. If you manage to get a few compliments from people who write at a level that you don’t yet fully understand what it is they are doing, then you know you are heading in the right direction, and it undoubtedly helps ease the pain from the critics who want to discourage you.
Writing content on the web is fun, but there are certain things that you need in order to do it in comparison to most fictional writers in the old days who just needed a pen and paper. You won’t get far without a decent computer and keyboard to help you not only have the ability to punch the keys but to give you enough of a platform that doesn’t make writing a complete distraction.
There are many advantages to doing the line of work that I do. None are more appealing that being able to work anywhere in the world that has a WiFi connection and allows my visa to enter. In the early years of my writing career online, I knew that in the back of my head but it was never appealing to me because at the time I didn’t have the confidence to do what I needed to do from a smaller display. The larger 20+ inch desktop screen was what felt most natural to work from—and preferably being a large desk with nice chair. Now some five or six years in, none of that is necessary, and I do believe it is possible to work from a laptop without the need of using a desktop computer at all. Part of the reason is that laptops are so much better than they were around five years ago and the other part is that I am a lot better than I was five years ago.
The beginning of my blogging career before it was a career was done from my parent’s computer. It was about fifteen years old at the time—including the few extra years on top of the years that we had owned it because unbeknown to my father who purchased it from the store it was already a few years old when he bought it—and it would struggle to offer the chance to keep a few browser tabs open at a time because of it’s old age and 32-bit processor. Further, It had a horrible howling sound coming from the motherboard each time it was turned on and for the duration of its time being on if the temperature were to hit above luke warm in the room because of an ailing part that my parents never bothered to get fixed and I couldn’t afford to. That was the beginning of my writing career for at least a few years.
I did have a laptop at the time—a mini Hewlett Packard that I managed to get enough money for thanks to the governments handing out copious amounts of money for the sake of trying to stimulate the economy. There was enough appeal in escaping reality at the time that made me want to spend all of that money on a laptop which I had not yet owned. Of course, me being me, I didn’t want just any old laptop—I wanted the best of the bunch that was available on the shelf. The one I came home with was black all around, had incredible graphics on the lid of the foldable case and a beautiful chrome spacing between the screen and the keyboad—a divine laptop design. The perfect blend of complexity and elegance. My girlfriend at the time, who can only be described as nothing but a huge mistake, had one similar and so did her mother—but neither of them would come close to matching the good looks of my new baby.
Back in those days, even the creme de la creme of the mini laptops had 32-bit processors. In fact, I had already started studying IT, and I didn’t completely know the difference between the two apart from the fact hat the 64-bit sounds naturally larger and therefore would offer more of whatever it was that it was offering.
I can recall having this one distinct conversation with the girl I was dating at the time about how the more tabs you have open on a browser the slower the computer is going to be with the browser that you have open. That was something that didn’t resonate very well with her, and she shot the idea down. My only thoughts were this woman can’t be that dumb. Surely she is aware of the way the computer is slowing down. It’s plain to see. How can you not be? I later realized that her way of not noticing the browser slowing down was because that laptop of hers must’ve been running with a 64-bit processor while my 32-bit processor had yet another downfall.
As time went on, there was more news about what this 64-bit processor is all about in the front of me, and I then realized that I needed an upgrade. Hoping my parents would finally update their computer that was going on two decades old wasn’t going to be a great strategy.
Then one weekend I had some friends who were staying in my area at the local caravan park want to spend some time with me and have a few drinks. I took the night off and headed over. Before the end of the night but considerably after the beginning of my drinking my friend’s wife pulled out her new toy—a Microsoft Surface. Some people call these tablets, and other people call them laptops. If you are using it with the keyboard attached, then it’s hard not to call it a laptop.
The fact that I had consumed a few drinks might have obstructed my judgment, but the MS Surface seemed great. The screen was a much better quality than the screen I had from my HP Mini that was getting old now and not HP’s fault. The Surface was also very easy to use.
Fast forward a few months and I had enough money saved to go shopping for a new laptop, but the budget was a limited one. I’d write several thousand words on a Microsoft Surface RT to date for work, and I knew a fair bit about them. I did even more research on what I could potentially buy with my money and what would be out of reach. As it got later in the evening, the thought of buying one of these Microsoft Surface laptops (completed with the keyboard) was becoming increasingly real. I started texting my friend who had the Surface Pro and asked as many practical questions as I could think of about how her experience with the Surface laptop was going. She didn’t have a great deal to say because she hardly uses it but she quickly shot down any of the concerns that I had and the potential reasons I had not to buy it—like the fact that I would need a laptop that is easy to type from and not one that doesn’t allow me to type quickly or one that doesn’t have enough power.
It always feels good to buy something, but there’s nothing like laying down a wad of cash on something that equates to you having just about no cash let to spend and is something that you really wanted to have. I decided I would go ahead with the idea of hoping the Microsoft Surface Pro would be everything that I wanted it to be, and there was one reason that made it the clear favorite above all else. That reason is the detachable keyboard.
I watch enough TV and sit in front of a computer screen enough to just about never miss an advertisement if it is being advertised aggressively. The Microsoft Surface ad was one that fits the bill of being an aggressive ad, and I probably saw it within the first few days of it being advertized. The ad itself painted a picture that was one of fun and colorful and practical in the sense that it would give kids or teenagers something that suited their needs throughout the day. It was never advertised as an elegant device that made the amount of money they were asking for it as reasonable, and most of all, they never advertised it with one of the main focal points being the typing—but I had seen otherwise.
One of the problems I had after owning my HP mini after just a few years or maybe even less was the keyboard had come off the sides, and it was no longer sitting flush with the bottom as it should have been. My friends over in the United Kingdom and suffered similar keyboard woes and after he had laid down around a thousand dollars, we were shopping for a new one again because one of the keys had fallen out of its location.
That was the time when I knew that buying the Microsoft Surface tablet wasn’t just going to a grand idea because I liked the look of it and was a part of a successful sale pitch and incredibly influenced by a friend who was visible in love with everything about the Surface laptop. It was also going to offer me a device that I could keep for a long time because of its 64-bit processing power, excellent screen resolution and if anything were to happen to the keyboard, I could just buy another keyboard instead of having to purchase the entire laptop as a complete package.
After owning the Microsoft Surface Pro tablet for well over a year now and maybe even two, I don’t have any complaints with the typing. I do have an issue with the keyboard not connecting perfectly like it should, and I end up having to reconnect it every so often so that it starts working again, but the typing itself is brilliant.
What’s more, the 64-bit processor that the Microsoft Surface Pro comes with is the most power I’ve ever had in a computer and far outperforms the parent’s old computer. They have since upgraded to an HP all-in-one computer that too is a 64-bit processor, but the Surface tablet was the first 64-bit architecture I had used on a device within my home.
My production working from true 64-bit architecture has risen by about 100% thanks to being able to keep multiple tabs open at the one time for research purposes, and the work itself is much more pleasant than when I had to work with the howling fan sound. The Microsoft Surface Pro does come with a fan, but the fan doesn’t kick in if you are just doing regular writing work on the laptop. The fan mainly comes into play when you are watching videos, and often it takes a couple of videos on at the same time before you can hear it turn on.
Now that I’ve written over five million words in about five years it’s entirely plausible that I never own a desktop computer. It’s always good to see what your website looks like on a desktop computer, but the writing itself and the developing no longer require it. Moreover, the keyboards that are available from two-in-one devices like the Microsoft Surface Pro range are so great to type from I might even prefer typing from the Surface than the desktop I have available.
If there’s one piece of advice I have for you with regards to the Microsoft Surface tablets it is to stay away from the touch cover that they try to sell you. They are useless and not suitable for any typing let alone being a writer. It’s borderline better than just typing from the Surface’s screen itself. You also need to make sure you are buying the right keyboard. Even the conventional keyboards from Microsoft for the type covers can vary depending on the country, and some of them have not been thought through very well. For example, the first type cover that I bought had a Shift key that was tiny and it was an annoyance to be able to do a capital letter after a full stop (period) in every sentence because it was so difficult to tap on it. The second keyboard that I bought did not have that problem, and the Shift key is the more traditional size, and long so it’s not difficult for your finger to touch it when you want to slam it down at the beginning of the sentence.
If I’m not shopping for a Microsoft Surface in my next shopping experience for a laptop to use as my workstation, I’ll always be checking out the detachable keyboard laptop options instead of the traditional laptop due to then being able just to replace the keyboard and not the full laptop itself when something goes wrong with the keyboard which is usually always the first thing to break before the hardware or screen. Nowadays these detachable keyboard laptops are packing enough power for you to use then for everyday use online, including having five or so browser tabs open without it becoming any issues at all.