A great tool if you’re writing on a deadline

All righty then. Just finished up a cool conversation with a dude that I have to meet with later to figure out some stuff.

Now, I guess I’ll keep plugging away at writing, nay, testing Write or Die, a timing and wordcount interface that helps focus your writing by imposing limitations and consequences on your writing.

I’ve not bumped into the consequences yet, but I have bumped into the limitations.

– it’s hard to spellcheck.
– no other formatting commands, it’s all about getting the words out of your head and on the screen
– Oh, hey, the screen turned red when I paused for thought. Cool.. Just to let me know that I shouldn’t do that, I guess.

Now then, this test is only a 200 wordcount test, and I set a time limit of 10 minutes to write it.

At this point, including the 3 minutes of conversation that occured after I launched the app, but before I started actual writing, I’m at 159 words and about 4 minutes remaining. I should be able to make the deadline…maybe.

Wow, one thing I do notice; all this concentrated writing is causing me to notice my wrists. Usually my writing style is more thoughtful and casual, but right now I’m just spewing…oh, hey, I just made 200 words, with about 3 minutes to spare.

Well, I won’t edit this too much; I’ll just paste it in as is, and let it be an example of work created with Write or Die.

After writing using this tool, here’re some thoughts:
– Yes, I’d use it again
– My wrist is kinda sore right now
– It could use some additional editing / layout features
– Anything written using Write or Die *must* be edited…typing spew is not good reading

26 seconds left – copy to clipboard just in case 🙂 Saving now.

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4 Replies to “A great tool if you’re writing on a deadline”

  1. I’ve recommended Write or Die to some friends, although I don’t use it myself.

    Spell-check and, for the most part, layout, are incidental to composition and can be left for when you take what you’ve written and past it into your word processor for revision.

    Also, what self-respecting browser doesn’t have a spell-check these days? I just tried, and Firefox’s spell check works fine with Write or Die.

  2. Thanks Ben,

    And yep, post-processing is a must for Write or Die. I really like the way it forces you to spew everything out, stream of consciousness writing if you will. Editing, formatting, layout, all that can follow after you’ve got the meat of your content created.

    Oh, I’d not thought to try Firefox’s spellcheck whilst writing. Good thought!

  3. This looks a great way to get some writing done. I have to try it! I actually read your tweet of this post and favorited it to read later, so glad I did!

  4. Hi Christine, yes, it’s a great way to get words out of your head and on the screen. I find myself using it to just get stuff out, then, go back and polish. It does seem to be speeding up the process, but I’m not comfortable with this style of writing yet. I do like to pause for thought, regroup and then continue — Write or Die penalizes you for that, though you can turn those settings off.

    Either way, I’m still going to keep testing it. Thanks for following up on the Tweet! Nice to know those are being read too 😉

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