The other morning I forgot how to touch type. I don’t know if it was down to tiredness, or lack of concentration, or perhaps a touch of mild bubonic plague; but whatever it was I was coming out with endless streams of jumbled consonants.  In the end I had to start watching what my fingers were doing on the keyboard in order to get coherent sentences out of them.  Best administrative assistant / writer evar.

Any person who has tried to write 2000 words of fiction every day over a sustained period of time will already know that touch typing is A Good Thing.  It means you can get lost in the words, letting them fall out of your brain and onto the screen in record time without breaking your concentration to remind your left index finger where the ‘f’ key is (which defies logic as it is – the ‘f’ key doesn’t have that bump on it for decoration, brain, it’s there so you can find it without looking).

Probably the worst thing you can possibly do in a ‘forgetting how to type’ situation is ironically most people’s default position, namely to overthink it.  If you go ‘oh, I’ve made more mistakes than usual, what’s going on there?’ you start to come up with outlandish ways to explain your ineptitude, which then gets progressively worse because you’ve been dwelling on it rather than getting on with what you’re meant to be doing.

I suspect if you didn’t pay any attention at all you’d probably work it out of your system naturally, and as long as you proof read your correspondence with due diligence no one need ever be any the wiser.  Although I don’t know that for sure, because I fall into the ‘noticing and wondering what’s the matter with me’ camp rather than the blitz era carrying on regardless group.

And this, dear reader, is what is known as a First World Problem – I gather there are some people out there who don’t even have any hands. Touch typing is but a distant dream for those brave souls and yet they struggle on.  Presumably they dictate their novels to a secretary, or upload them directly to Audioboo.

Verily, this is food for thought.