200 Words A Day archive.

The wrong solution for distraction-free writing?

Facebook must be on to the idea that I want to write. I saw an ad in my feed for something called a Freewrite portable typewriter.

This device has a mechanical keyboard and E-ink screen that can last for weeks on a charge. There is also built-in wifi for backups to various cloud services. The Freewrite modern typewriter is billed as a “distraction-free” writing tool. 

To me, US $549 is a steep price to pay for this type of device. I suppose typing on the Freewrite eliminates distractions that appear when typing on a computer, but if your phone is sitting next to you, the behavior hasn’t changed. 

There is a new product called the Freewrite Traveler to be released in the fall. This device was designed specifically to write on-the-go and is available for pre-order for US $369.

This is the wrong solution to the problem of distractions while writing. Aren’t there free or inexpensive apps you can install that allow you to block all distractions on a computer and focus on writing? The problem of distractions is a behavioral one, and in my opinion cannot be solved by a gadget like the Freewrite.

I would be curious to hear your opinion about the Freewrite product and whether you think there is value here.