Freelancing

Choosing A Great Keyboard For Writing

Regardless of whether you want to write a novel, a book, or you work as a freelance content writer, you quickly learn that writing is not that easy. Several factors affect it and the process tends to be longer than many think.

Fortunately, we no longer rely on pen and paper. We can use our computers to write faster. But, we still need a good keyboard for that.

Never underestimate how much a good keyboard changes how you write. I have been writing articles for websites for over 20 years now and I went through literally over a hundred keyboards. The best one is always going to be a difference. So, how do you choose the best keyboard for writing? Here are some of the things to take into account and some recommendations of keyboards I really like.

Should You Choose Membrane Or Mechanical Keyboards?

A mechanical keyboard is great for work. It is just more expensive. The way in which it operates is that as you press the key, a mechanism transmits an action. This makes it great if your hands are gentle.

The membrane keyboard will not make a sound. There is a rubber layer inside keys transmitting actions. When you write, the membrane keyboard makes the process harder when your hand is light. Also, membrane keyboards are economical.

Basically, mechanical keyboards are better for writers since they are more durable and can withstand more key presses but they will cost more. A membrane keyboard is usually a good entry point if you do not want to invest too much in the keyboard.

What Is The Best Keyboard Layout For Writers?

Here’s one thing you might not think about. We are all used with the traditional layout for the keyboard, the basic full-size keyboard. I prefer it and would not change it but this does not mean you should do the same.

The full-size keyboard is good because you have everything you need really easy to reach. The problem is that the keyboard is a little large. When you have smaller hands, you might even have problems with reaching some keys. This will stop you from writing as fast as you could.

If you want something really compact, the 40% keyboard is the smallest one. But, it is usually too small and you do not have easy access to some keys you would normally use. The TKL (tenkeyless) is, in my opinion, the best option if you are short on space. If you are not short on space, the full-sized keyboard can include many extra features that will help you write better, like a wrist rest.

Should You Go Wireless Or Wired?

Nowadays, this is just personal preference since wireless keyboards are so much better than they used to be. In fact, there are many wireless versions available for the best mechanical wired keyboards on the market.

Now, obviously, with wireless keyboards you do not have to deal with wires. But, remember you do have to charge them. Batteries can be a hassle and you have to double check how far away you can be from the receiver to use them. Just read reviews before you buy since some wireless keyboards have problems with the wireless connection.

Sound And Feeling

This is one thing that few people take into account but you should not make this mistake. We tend to choose keyboards based on appearance, not feel, which is a mistake.

Every single professional writer is affected by several subconscious things when writing. And there are not many things that are more impactful than the sound the keyboard makes. I like the sound of the mechanical keyboard but a friend of mine who also writes hates it. When she hears me write she has a problem. We actually cannot write in the same room since she isn’t able to focus. Her keyboard makes literally no noise.

It is a good idea to try the keyboard whenever possible. Or try several ones before buying online so you can choose the one that feels right for you.

My Favorite Keyboards For Writing

Razer BlackWidow Elite

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OK, this wired keyboard is around $170 and it is primarily a gaming keyboard. But, it is also great for writers who do not mind the click sound of mechanical keys.

There are only 2 real problems with this keyboard:

  • The volume dial is a little difficult to use.
  • The keyboard is on the expensive side.

The wrist rest is detachable and the backlighting is customizable. And keys are smooth, perfect for long writing sessions. Also, it is a guarantee the Razer BlackWidow Elite will last. In addition, there are five macro keys you can program to improve writing speed as you can set them for your common used commands.

Logitech MX Keys Wireless Illuminated Keyboard

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The wireless keyboard has wonderful features for writers. You can use it with all operating systems, is very comfortable, and even has backlighting. Backlighting is automatic, the keyboard is wireless and rechargeable. The keys are dished and comfortable. And you can actually connect the keyboard to 3 devices at the same time.

The only problems with this keyboard:

  • Looks a little generic.
  • Is more delicate and can crack faster than other keyboards.

What is interesting is that this keyboard will last 10 days after recharged if you use backlighting. If not, it can actually last 5 months, which is a lot. And you do have dedicated buttons to use for frequent shortcuts, like the classic copy/paste.

Das Keyboard 4

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This is another more expensive mechanical keyboard, around $170, but it is perfect if you do not like that gaming keyboard aesthetic. The Das Keyboard 4 is right now the thinnest of the mechanical keyboards you could buy. Keys are not that clicky and you can be sure the keyboard will last.

The only disadvantages of the keyboard are:

  • The keyboard is on the expensive side.
  • There is no backlit function.

The Das Keyboard 4 will look great on any desk. It is comfortable when you use it for a long time and the design is minimal. Response time is great and keys are spaced out in a very comfortable way.

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