Janet Sumner Johnson
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Brawl ‘n Haul Contest: This vs. That Thursday

Mar 31, 2011 Uncategorized 29 comments

For today’s contest, Vicki and I will each debate a side on a This vs. That vote. Read my arguments here, then go read Vicki’s on her blog, and don’t forget to vote on both blogs for whichever side is more convincing!


Pen and Paper

I will be defending the archaic Pen and Paper. Now I know we all have to eventually use a computer to type in our pages. I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about when you need to sit and write. You need to simply get words down on paper. And I am going to convince you with the TOP TEN REASONS for choosing Pen and Paper, David Letterman style.

Reason #10: No internet to distract you.

Reason #9: No blogs to distract you.

Reason #8: No e-mail to distract you.

Reason #7: Saves electricity.

Reason #6: Pen and Paper is lightweight and travels easily.

Reason #5: You have a hard copy of your work if your computer dies. (!!!)

Reason #4: The smell of paper is a sentient reminder of the goal of being published.

Reason #3: Builds two talents at once: 1) writing and 2) penmanship.

Reason #2: Builds the calluses on your hand which builds your Street Cred as a writer.

And the #1 reason to use Pen and Paper?: When you don’t like your work, it’s SO much more satisfying to crumple up your paper than to simply hit delete.

Now that you’re all convinced, go check out Vicki’s side of things, but be sure to vote on both blogs! And don’t forget, you have until midnight on April 2 to vote on any of our brawls.

And if you’re just joining us, here are the rules for our Brawl ‘n Haul contest. For a longer explanation and the posting schedule for the contest, click here.


  1. You must be a follower of both blogs
  2. When you comment, let us know if you prefer Grand Prize #1 – 10-page critique by Sarah LaPolla (Note: your ten pages must be for a YA or Adult work) or Grand Prize #2 – A Prize-filled Gift Basket
  3. You can earn 5 bonus entries for the grand prize by spreading the word in any way shape or form (twitter, blogs, facebook, sidebar, etc.). Just let us know!
  4. This is open internationally! Woo hoo!
  5. Contest Closes Saturday 2 April at midnight EST. All winners will be announced Monday, 4 April

29 Responses to โ€œBrawl ‘n Haul Contest: This vs. That Thursdayโ€

  1. Vicki Rocho says:

    Ack…it's gonna be a closer battle today! Have to admit I like #1!

  2. Justine Dell says:

    Your reasons for using a pen and paper are so great!! You actually had me wondering if I was doing the wrong thing.

    But … I have to go with Vicki on this one. Laptops are faster and give me no hands cramps!

    Great job, though!


  3. Lenny Lee* says:

    hi miss janet! i used to just do pen and paper and one of my brothers put it in the computer for me. now i learned how to type and use the computer it just way more easy. so i gotta go with miss vicki on this one.
    …hugs from lenny

  4. Janet makes a better argument for pen and paper, however, for me, the laptop would win because: no agent, publisher, editor or test reader will read your pen and paper novel. So in the end, your book will be written on a laptop/desktop.

  5. Saumya says:

    I LOVE this! I am such a pen and paper girl but I do write quicker on the computer. I agree with all of your reasons! Plus, it's fun to write with pens and then have the chance to tuck your notes into your pocket or purse.

  6. I wrote my first draft on computer and before that I was strictly paper. I think I've found a happy medium though. I do some beginning stuff on paper but then I move to the computer to finish and then I'm back to paper for revising and editing. Yay!! I love paper and pen though, that's where my heart is.

  7. ๐Ÿ™‚ Yeah, I love pen and paper, but I couldn't ever choose a side on this. Computers are more practical, but for drafting, pen and paper is more satisfying. Hm… ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Ooooh. You have such a good argument! I was so sure who was being voted for but…this was good…Still might have to go with computer!

  9. Lori M. Lee says:

    I'm afraid I'm going to have to go with the laptop, although I was once a strong supporter of the pen and paper!

  10. Jolene Perry says:

    You put up a good argument, but I have to go with laptop. My hands can't write fast enough for my brain!

  11. Melissa says:

    You've got a good argument for pen and paper here. Really makes me want to vote for you, but I write so much faster with my laptop. Got to go with Vicki today;)

  12. ooh, you make a good argument– #1 and #3 made me L.O.L! But you forgot one key thing. My hand would fall off writing that much –HA!

  13. Yat-Yee says:

    I have a soft spot for pen and paper, I love the tactile feeling about it. Also the not being distracted by blog thing is very real. (Like what I am doing now.) For practical reasons, though, I have to vote for laptop.

  14. You know, I'm amazed by how many are going for the laptop argument. Laptops/computers are great for editing/rewriting, but for a new work of creative gurgitation I need pen and paper! You win this one, Janet.

  15. Reason 10 is amazing. I'm sold.

  16. Number 1 and Number 5 take the cake on this list. And yeah, I'm voting for you this time. Because they're nothing like long hand to strengthen your flowing prose.

    Oh, and yeah. #1 for me. ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. I can spell. What I meant to write was that there is nothing like long hand to strengthen your flowing prose.

  18. mshatch says:

    Altho I spent many many hours with pen in hand, I'm afraid I'm giving my vote to the lap top.

  19. Beth says:

    I have to go with pen and paper. You made a compelling argument with reason #10 and they just keep getting better. (Except for the penmanship point. My handwriting is poor, but no one other than me needs to read it.)

  20. So if I vote for Vicki on this will you still pick me up at the airport? I LOVE you reasonings, but I am a laptop girl (minor detail being that I am a photographer not a writer) but still!!!! Sorry, sis! I feel like a traitor!!

  21. Jen Chandler says:

    I'm a first draft pen and paper gal ๐Ÿ˜€ I LOVE #4 and #1 and I'll be keeping those in mind as I continue with my rewrite!

    Have a great weekend!

  22. LTM says:

    these are very good arguments! Now if only I didn't get that dang writer's cramp…

    Over to Vicki's~ ;p

  23. Lisa Potts says:

    I'll always have a soft spot for pen and paper, but Vicki gets my vote on this one.

  24. Jemi Fraser says:

    Love reason #1!!! Perfect ๐Ÿ™‚

  25. I'm voting for you, Janet, because your reasons are hilarious (not because I ever use pen and paper anymore)!

    Prize numero uno.


  26. Building up our steet cred as a writer – GRIN!

    Ink stains out to be in there somewhere. There must be an advantage to those, somehow!

  27. This is a great post, Janet, and although Vicki's was good too and I love my computer, I'm voting for you with the pen and paper (guess pencil counts for that too). Both grand prizes sound great, I'd prefer #2.

  28. My pick on this one is LAPTOP!

    Prize pack #2

  29. I'm going with you on this one…Almost all of my stories start out on pen and paper. After I write the first draft I type and start the revision process. I'm doing the same thing with my mg. I write a chapter, then type it up…

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