The Hemingway Productivity Postulate, II

Ok, a little more.

I’m sure the people who made The Hemingwrite (and its slightly-less-flagrantly-pandering-to-wannabe-writers sibling The Freewrite) are earnest in their desire to help writers “escape distraction” and get more writing done, but this sort of product offering—pay hundreds of dollars for a crippled version of the electronic devices you already have 2-3 of—is just such a cynically effective way to extract money from people with disposable income who believe, perhaps desperately believe, that all they need to “be a writer” is the one tool that will magically overcome whatever stupid bullshit is keeping them from writing.

Because believe me: if you want to write, and you’re not writing, then you are not writing because of some stupid bullshit, not because your top-of-the-line Real Computer is “too distracting”.

I say all of this with such venom because I am 1000% the target audience of this product, my hand jerked towards my goddamned debit card as soon as I saw its e-ink screen and chunky keycaps.

I bought an AlphaSmart in the early 2000s for this exact reason: let me write on a digital tool without all the distractions available on my iMac, and I’ve spent plenty of time and money on other ineffective solutions for the problem of “why aren’t I cranking out novels the way my graven idol Hemingway did????”

*Why do I feel like I want to write, but I never do?*

There is an answer to this question, and it’s probably different for you than it is for me. But take my advice—it costs a lot less than USD $899—the tools you use to write are not your problem.

The ghost of Hemingway will not save you. And when someone throws him in your face to make a buck, I recommend you flip them the bird, no matter how well-meaning they might be.

I’ll give the team behind The Hemingway this, though: they made me mad enough to write all of the above, and that’s something.

Dan J @danj