The internet is still fairly new, so I don’t think it’s a stretch to surmise that most people who use the web used a word processor first. As such, many people still think word processors are synonymous with writing – even web writing. That's too bad.
Word processors were invented to make words pretty on printed paper. They’re not so helpful for making words look nice in HTML.
Using a word processor for web-bound words is like using an eighteen-wheeler as a golf cart. You can do it, but it will ultimately deter you from playing much golf.1
If you want to publish anything online, don’t use a tool where web writing was shoehorned in as an afterthought; use a tool that skips unnecessary and obsolete features. A tool that facilities the most important aspect of any writing workflow: creating words.
As long as my fingers are moving, when I write Markdown in Notational Velocity, I can only do one of three things:
- Create words
- Arrange words
- Convert words to HTML
This is word processing evolved.
- Seriously, how many times has your word processor’s design gotten in the way of your writing? Do you feel like every new document has to have a purpose? Does the process of thinking about where to save the file keep you from getting thoughts down? Have you lost writing because it was too hard to search multiple word processor files? Have you wasted time playing with formatting long before your words were ready to publish? If yes to any of that, it’s time to garage the eighteen-wheeler. ↩