I walked off the bus into the cool air of the morning, inspired by a writer whose work takes me to the river in the summer buzzing with the mosquitoes. I want to write. I want to write well. I am struggling to write sitting at my desk in my corner cubicle surrounded by office noises and the distractions of floating conversations. If I could write outside. I picture myself on a bench overlooking the river notebook in hand. Fine paper and good pens that would make the ideas fresh and inviting. My thoughts seem to work themselves out well when I am walking in the quiet of the campus. Most people take inside routes on days like these.
When I started my writing this fall, I reverted to pen on paper. Ironic for an explorer of new literacies. I wonder if I can get used to this format. I have done most of my academic writing on a computer as I am writing now. The ideas seem to sit stagnent on the page. Lifeless. Will my writing be lifeless when mediated through technology? My closet Luddite throws itself against the machine and cries out. It is different to read a book on the bus immersed in the words and the images that form in my mind, than to sit here focused on a screen. The task of writing is infinitely harder than the task of reading, is that the only difference or is it the media itself which is getting in the way. I love the look and feel of paper, the smell of a bookstore. If only multimedia could create smell, now that would be something! I am reminded of Kress and his writing on affordances. Each mode of communication has different affordances. Speech offers something different from writing, pictures something different than words, paper something different from screen. This is what he means and how it feels to be caught up in it.