Tuesday, August 30, 2005

What if....?

Some people think the need to write is a disease, and maybe it is, but what if you had a real disease, a degenerative disease? What if your hands trembled out of control? How would you write? Could you write? What if your memory was slipping away and you couldn't hold on to information you needed to know? What if muscular problems wouldn't allow you to sit for long periods of time? What if you felt time was running out?

Could you possibly find ways to compensate, and get around these obstacles? Maybe some of you already have had to overcome handicaps that threaten your ability to write. What did you do? I would really like to know. Are there ways to get around these problems? I may need to know.

I have come to realize this week that these things may be in my future. I don't know for sure yet, but I do know one thing, it means I need to reformulate my goals. I need to decide which goals are most important to me and the best way to attain them. I need to quit wasting time and making excuses. Reality is knocking at my door.

What about you? Are you thinking about what you want from your writing? Are you setting long-term goals and short-term goals? What if there was the possibility that you would lose the physical or mental skills you need to achieve those goals? Would you give up writing? I can't. Would you do things differently? I will!

(c) 2005 Sharon A. Soffe


Chuck said...

I'm a techie - I beieve that most, if not all, of the problems you describe can be overcome with technology.

I have considered a couple of these points. My own memory, especially for names, is like a sieve. As such, every time I start working on a story, I have a notes file set up with it. That holds a list of all characters with pertinent information, a timeline, and plot points that I want to include in the story.

I'm getting ready to experiment with a voice recognition program. The primary reason is for my son's use in college - he has a voice recorder that he's allowed to use during lectures (he has ADD) and he dicovered that the college library has a voice recognition program that lets you plug in your recorder and it transcribes it to text, then prints it out. He wasnts to do this in his dorm room. I'm charged with getting the program and trying it out first. If it works, I'll also be using it for at least some of my writing tasks.

For mobility problems, first thing I'd look into is a wireless keyboard. Move it with you to where you're comfortable.

Basically, so long as you want to write, there are tools available to make writing possible.


Shari Lyle-Soffe said...


Thanks for the information. I felt sure that at least some of the problems could be overcome with technology, but I wasn't sure just what. I appreciate your input.


Steph said...

Haywood Smith (of the Red Hat books) has dealt with many physical challenges, as has Rebecca Wells (Ya-Ya Sisterhood). Smith and Wells both have excellent webpages, and Wells talks about her illness (and working with it) on her page.

Perhaps it will help to talk with two authors who have figured out how to work with their physically debilitating illnesses. You can email Haywood Smith from her webpage, and I believe you can join chats on Rebecca Wells pages, but I'm not sure how to email her.

Best to you,

Shari Lyle-Soffe said...


Thank you for the suggestion. I will check their websites.