To Stand or Sit?

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Fri Aug 04, 2017 3:13 am Post

vic-k wrote:The elderly gent replied, unhesitatingly, “Well, young fella, I never stood up, when I could sit down ... and I never sat down when I could lie down.”

Repeat that process 30 times a day and you're good to go. . . . :)


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Fri Aug 04, 2017 7:18 am Post

dafu wrote:Repeat that process 30 times a day and you're good to go. . . .
... and!! if you add to that, the extra 30 times a day up and down stairs, as well as the umpteen times day you go up and down looking for the wotnots-n-thingybijibs, because you can't remember where you've left them, you'll be fitter than a fell-runner or a butcher's dog!! Image
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Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:35 am Post

It's been a month since I started standing for much of my writing, and here's that promised update. I'm now using the standing set up described a few posts ago for almost all of my actual published writing, which amounts to several hours per day, depending on the assignment and deadlines. As noted earlier, per recent ergonomic studies, I'm making it a point to move a little bit almost constantly rather than standing stock still -- shifting the position of my legs, bending knees, occasional twists etc. That has very recently been facilitated by this item, which provides not only much more welcome cushioning than the folded old yoga mat that preceded it, but also positively encourages movement.

For the same reason, I'm also forcing myself to shift positions every half hour or so. (I haven't resorted to the free pomodoro-style timer that would alert me to do so when immersed in writerly reverie.) I now have three different writing stations in my study, in ascending order of sloth:

1) the standing set up (really a shelf at the back of the desk I already had; it's one of those Scandinavian things in which the desktop surface slides into shelving, allowing me to stand a couple of feet from my old Cinema Display), which I use actual Scrivening when I need the bigger screen for displaying split screen and document notes.

2) a little window desk that overlooks a lovely orchard and weeping willow. I used to use my MacBook (when not docked to the display) here, but have since reserved it for the iPad Pro, because I can raise the screen higher (on one of the file tray organizers and a cheap little portable elevating iPad/iPhone stand) and use my old Apple Wireless Keyboard. I can actually see the trees above and around it, whereas the display would have blocked my view. I use it when the small screen will be enough, like for email or editing a single document or writing a short article or section of a story where I don't need lots of reference material displayed. I'm lucky have a nice ergonomic deskchair bought from one of those office supply re-sellers that bought up rafts of office equipment during the recession and resells them out of a warehouse for pennies on the dollar. This is also the set up I use when I'm working away from my home office, on campus or when traveling, except that I bring along the thinner, more portable Logitech Keys to Go keyboard and the little folding stand, or just use my iPad cover as a stand.

3) my couch, where I read and browse, write L&L forum posts like this one, deal with email, and occasionally edit documents, all on the iPad pro, which nests in my cheap old Incase Origami keyboard case along with the Apple keyboard it was built for, all squatting on one of those padded lapdesks I've had since college. What I love about this (besides, well, couchy comfort) is the fact that I can just grab the iPad and hold it like a book or magazine when I'm reading, which is primarily what I do at this station. But, if I do need to write something longer, like an email message or comment on a document or a forum post, I can easily slip the iPad into the Origami case. It's much easier than extracting it from a keyboard case, and I get to use my favorite full sized keyboard to boot. Moving from reading to writing with the keyboard and back takes approximately 1 second.

So far, I'm really enjoying this triple set up. I feel more assertive somehow when standing to write, and I've noticed that the stiffness in my back I'd noticed the first few days appears to be abating, whether from simply developing more muscular support due to repetition, the new mat cushion, the frequent shifting of station and position, who knows? And just shifting position seems to give me a bit of a refresh. I usually manage to find an excuse to walk over and do some brief household task when I know it's time for a break or position shift. I feel very lucky that except for the mat, I didn't have to buy anything to make this happen. From what I've read and experienced, the key seems to be just making sure we move frequently, regardless of the writing position we're in, and therefore, I think it's time to end this post and get back to standing and writing that story due on Monday! I hope this is helpful to other writers. I can attach photos if anyone would find that useful.

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Tue Sep 12, 2017 7:56 am Post

Just seen this, Brett (after a couple of weeks away). The mat certainly looks interesting, and, apart from its progress report on standing, your review is also suggestive of my notion that the iPad Pro could be a valuable tool for many writers - less is more. Many thanks.
'Listen, some quiet night, when you've shirked your work that day. Do you hear
that distant, almost inaudible clicking sound? That's one of your
competitors, working away in the night in
Paris or London or Erie, PA.'