Hunt and Peck
You all know I’m as old as dirt, and this post will prove it. When I was growing up in the Dark Ages, the only job opportunities available for young women seemed to be as teachers, nurses or secretaries. I once actually interviewed at a large insurance company where I was told I was too blond and too pretty to get the job. Yes! Retroactive lawsuit, anyone? But I’m sure the statute of limitations is long over. Flattering yet frustrating, they did not think I’d make a credible witness in court. I wound up taking a quickie exam and began my career as a second grade teacher in a slum school in NYC.
I had assiduously avoided learning how to type all through high school and college. Typing was only offered to those in the “Commercial Course” anyway. My father nagged and nagged me to take typing at night school to have “something to fall back on when your husband leaves you.” Yes! Retroactive therapy, anyone? But I’m used to my craziness and would miss it if I were cured. I did sign up for typing in adult ed with my college boyfriend, but we left at the break to go make out. I guess that’s “hook up” now. So I’m a typing class drop-out.
Computers have vastly improved my secretarial skills, such as they are, but home row and I are not friends. Although I use most of my digits, they do not go where the Typing Master intended. I can’t believe I’ve written close to three-quarters of a million words these past few years primarily with two fingers.
Several years ago my PC died and I wound up starting Third-Rate Romance in longhand on a yellow legal pad. I didn’t type it up for ages, mostly because I could not read what I wrote. I find I actually think better typing, which makes no sense at all, but there it is. In order to write, I have to be sitting at my crowded little desk in my crowded little room. In order to read, I have to be lying down on a bed, hurting my middle-aged elbows…or in a chaise by a pool or in my Adirondack chair in the garden. No planes, trains or automobiles.
Sometimes I wonder if I’d achieve more success if I could type faster, but then I remind myself my husband hasn’t left me yet. There’s still time to learn to type. How about you? Quill or computer? Where do you get cozy to read?