I do around 60 minutes of commuting each day. 30 minutes in, 30 minutes out. Not counting delays, that’s 5 hours a week. 20 hours a month. Unless I’m reading, it’s dead time.


So here’s what I did to build it into my writing schedule…


I bought an iPad Pro and one of those pencil things. I save down my edits as Word docs and then write notes on my manuscripts as I sit there, somewhere between Moorgate and Palmers Green.

It was a pretty expensive gamble, but it’s one that’s paid off, because I’m now tearing through my edits.

Here’s why it’s great:

  • The pencil feels very natural. Like writing on a notepad.
  • It’s easy to erase notes you don’t want.
  • You can scrawl all over your manuscript.
  • You have a bunch of styles available – highlighters, colours etc.
  • You can have as many manuscripts saved on there as you like.
  • If you don’t feel like writing, you can watch Netflix on it.
  • When you go on holiday, it’s pretty much all you need to take with you for writing (especially if you get the smart keyboard as well).

Here’s a screenshot of a story I was working on last week:


Beautiful, eh?

My handwriting is terrible (left-handed, innit), but I can decipher it. And in that respect it’s almost better because the nosy accountant peering over my shoulder won’t be able to see what I’m writing.

Is this the first swear-free Jack Binding post? Fucking almost.



  1. Can you type on it? Do you have an external keyboard or do you just type on the screen? Or do you draft your manuscripts on your laptop/desktop and reserve the tablet for edits and small changes?

    I ask because I’ve taken my old iPad Mini (definitely not Pro!) on trips and brought along a small, Bluetooth-enabled external keyboard, and that works fairly well, if not perfectly, for writing. I’d love to be able to ditch the keyboard, though, as I get more and more impatient with #toomuchstuff as I get older. The Holy Grail for me would be a small, wafer-thin tablet that has an onscreen tablet as responsive and fast as an external one.



    1. Hello Marjorie, yes, you can type on it, although I have a keyboard that acts also as a case. The keyboard is an Apple one, and it ain’t cheap, but it does the trick. Laptop is still preferable, but the keyboard is the best tablet keyboard I’ve tried. It’s all about the pen, though. The ability to scribble notes in an iPad is great.


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