So here is a photo review of the writers’ lives through the ages:
1. The Stone Age
Can't imagine what editing and rewriting was like.
2. Dawn of Civilization
3. Medieval times
Writing with inks and quillis on parchment was a huge improvement. Monks spent their lives writing these books. Unfortunately not many people could read the books, so high the global illiteracy rate.
4. Industrial age
Now we've come a long way. There is any number of manual typewriters available and, oh yes, that miracle machine: The printing press. Travel was easier too. There were options of ancient cars, trains, and good old horse and carriage (not to forget bicycles).
5. Twentieth century
It's definitely gotten a lot better: much more efficient manual typewriters, the emergence of the electric typewriter (I dread to think of the amount of papers these used), word processors, photocopiers and finally the personal computer. Agreed large mainframes were around since the mid-twentieth century, but it is the personal computers that really revolutionized the way writers work. But the greatest contribution to the writing revolution: The internet. Amazon became an integral source of book distribution forcing most book retailers to develop an online presence. Self-publishing became an affordable viable alternative to large publishing houses. Ebooks became much more accessible and popular.
But while writing tools were revolutionized, book promotion still primarily involved book tours (that included real travel), book signings, book readings and appearances on radio shows. Good news is, there were plenty of ways to get there.
6. Twenty-first century
Now in the twenty-first century, we've managed to build on the technology of the twentieth century. We still use computers (much faster and smaller, I must say). We have Ipads, thinkpads and netbooks, and all manner of smart phones. We can chat with agents, editors, and publishers by phone, instant message, email and on facebook and twitter etc. The great revolution of the 21st century was not the invention of the internet, but improvment in its use. With the emergence of facebook, twitter, my space and other networking sites, as well as the blogosphere, books can be promoted while sitting at a computer in your pjs. Book tours are quickly being replaced or at least enhanced with blog tours. Podcast, radio promotions without even traveling to the radio stations are utilized a lot. Trailers hit you tube before books hit the market and readers have instant access to writers.
Ebooks are beginning to dominate the market with Amazon Kindle, and Nook and you name it. Self published book can become best sellers because marketing is so much easier. Paper waste reduced (hopefully).
With all the technology that has enhanced writing and marketing over the centuries, aren't you glad to be a 21st century author?