A writer’s essential tools

Here’s something that has proved invaluable to me recently; 

From plotting car chases to simply getting a feel for a village street, it’s superb! 

Aside from the obvious tools that a writer needs to have to hand, ie; 

    I’d recommend one of these – a Netbook!

I wouldn’t have been able to get very far without my trusty Acer!

I know they’re not dirt cheap, but I really struggled to do much writing before I bought my trusty Acer!  Good value for money if you can get a used one.  Linux versions are cheaper to buy, but to be honest – I’ve not enjoyed the experience.  Gimme Windows back again (sorry Linux fans).

Get one if you can…try Acer’s graded site.

I did see a ‘Zoostorm Freedom’ Netbook for sale in Argos in August (2010) for £199 with Windows 7 loaded.  May be available from Amazon or eBuyer.

And if you find a Netbook useful, I’d also recommend one of these for those long waits in a car…

Keep your Netbook powered at all times for those long novels!

Before I aspired to something more civilised, I wrote many, many words on my old HP Jornada 620 – mostly my ‘Elementals’ work.

Small, pocket sized but can be fiddly to use and download

It wasn’t hugely expensive (my first cost £65 and the next two came as a pair for £35!).  However, this model was notoriously unreliable (which is why I went through three of them) and awkward to upload the work onto a PC or laptop, requiring extra software on the PC and an adaptor cable (£14 new).

Also needed was a boxful of back-up batteries for when it ran out of juice and lost all the settings.  This may only have been a fault of the Jornadas I used, although all three suffered from this.  Newer models are now available, however.

This model replaced my poor old Acer Travelmate that was a good enough machine – it just wasn’t portable enough!  I needed something pocket-sized that I would be able to take anywhere.

Old faithful laptop that I had for over seven years (and it’s still going!)

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. jennifer blanchard
    Jul 15, 2010 @ 16:20:29

    Great post, thanks for the suggestions! Before I attempted NaNoWriMo three years ago, I purchased an Alphasmart Neo, which is a great word processor that runs on three AA batteries and lasts through about 700 hours of use.The reason I love this tool is because it is extremely minimal. The only thing it does is word process. You can’t connect to the Internet. You can’t check your e-mail. Because of this, you really can’t get distracted while you’re writing.


    • Andrew Toynbee
      Jul 16, 2010 @ 14:04:24

      Hi Jennifer.
      Thanks for your kind comments. I’d like to thank you in return – the only reason this blog exists is because of your support and encouragement.

      700 hours – I’m green with envy. My Netbook is limited to 2 hours max which is why I need a car-based power supply. I’m still hopeful that solar panels might prove to be a solution in the future.

      All the best


I'd really like to know what you think of this...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

A Girl Who Writes

author. blogger. ranter & raver.

Rati Mehrotra

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writer


Joseph D. Stirling, Author


One writer's burning ambition to become an Author

Dropped Pebbles

A Safe Pond For Little Fish to Gather-A Writing Blog for Upcoming Authors

So you want to be a writer?

I'm an aspiring author. This is my escape blog. Follow the journey day by day.

Amanda Staley

Fulfilling the dream of becoming a writer



Paul Kirsch

written by the light of a guttering gas lamp

Tricia Drammeh

Author, Blogger, Book Lover

vic briggs

A writer adrift

Eye Candy Visionz

Photography by Jennifer L Thorpe

leftbraintendencies's Blog

This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas


Pictures of toes, pictures of feet, making the world a better place, one foot at a time.

lili's urban signs

... seen in different countries

Drops of Ink

by Phoebe

Crooked Tales by Jennifer L Thorpe

Short tales, Poems and Stories.


Get your poison, love.

Sorin Suciu

Official Website

Stories From the Belly

A Blog About the Female Body and Its Appetites


If sarcasm and self deprecating humour were an Olympic event I'd definitely qualify.

Tina DC Hayes

Author at Large

My train of thoughts on...

Smile! Don't look back in anger.

Entertaining Stories

Just a fiction writer, trying to reach the world.

What Is A Writer?

"A writer is someone who can write things we, humans are WILLING to read."

The Stranger Canvas

Live. Love. Dream. Explore


A dreamer but definitely a Believer

Author Mary J. McCoy-Dressel

Romantic & Passionate. Emotional & Compelling. Sensual Contemporary Western Romance


Just another human being who's trying to reach new levels of consciousness.

Arnold Zwicky's Blog

A blog mostly about language

Jennifer Nichole Wells

Fine Art Photography & Print Based Graphic Design

Karma's little spanker

Reality ... @#$%ing your brain...since...forever :)

Jodie Llewellyn

The ramblings of an aspiring YA author.


I'm just a guy who decided to stop sleeping but kept dreaming. I'm Edward Redd and I write novels. Come get blown away by my imagination.

Texan Tales & Hieroglyphics

A Collection of Somewhat Tawdry Tales of Texas (and of a few 'lesser' places)

Serene Delusions

"I'm so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word I am saying." -Oscar Wilde

Eli Glasman

Blog of Australian author Eli Glasman

A Good Blog is Hard to Find

I will shatter a word and scatter the contents into the wind to share it with the world.


Watch free tutorials in Full HD (1080p) quality video tutorials, sorted by subjects, like: Photoshop, Gimp, Facebook, Torrents, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Viruses and malware removal ( like ask,com, vqo6, Babylon ) and more and more.. If you like our tutorials and guided, please SUBSCRIBE to out channel at: http://www.youtube.com/user/ShaiSoft - tutorials4view.


Something that is ME

Ink Spillage

Another Teenage Writer with Crazy Ideas

Covered in Beer

by Thomas Cochran. Just another idiot on the Internet...Great.

Just a Blog

Expect nothing and you won't be disappointed!


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,556 other followers

%d bloggers like this: