The Curious and Creative Mind
There is nothing I admire more than a curious mind. When it comes to a problem, it is the curious mind that will solve what others have either given up on or incorrectly surmised a solution. I give the example of my recent keyboard issues which after hours of wasted time having an online HP tech try to figure out why my keyboard wouldn’t type said that I needed a new keyboard and for $291.85 they’d send a box to courier it to them and, in twelve to fourteen business days, I’d get my laptop back. The issue wasn’t the money, but in the time-period I’d be without my laptop. So, I said I’d take it to Staples where I’d purchased the laptop two years ago.
Early this morning, I went to Staples just to find out that they’d have to send it away to find out what was wrong with it and then they’d let me know how much it would cost. It would take up to three weeks before I’d get it back. Again, the time without my laptop wasn’t what I wanted to hear. Fortunately, he offered a solution, an external keyboard which I could use until I was ready to send in the laptop.
I ought to explain that I get very little time to work extensively on my second novel because my job as a teacher keeps me occupied from September to June with few brain cells left to spare or time to do more than a page or two every now and then. Summer break is prime typing and editing time for me.
The external keyboard seemed like an ideal solution and I took it home but found it had the same problem as my laptop; the keyboard wouldn’t work but the touch pad did. I wasted a few hours trying to get online support with Logitech and finally managed to find a phone number only to be told, after more wasted time checking out different options, the external keyboard wasn’t compatible with my laptop.
Yes, I returned to Staples, got a refund for the keyboard, and chose another wireless keyboard with assistance. I asked to test it before taking it home. I bought it, plugged it into my laptop and it too didn’t work. This brings me back to the curious mind. The entire time we were trying to find a solution from discovering USB 2.0 and 3.0 compatibility, to plugging it into another computer, to trying a non-wireless keyboard, the assistant was busy keying in queries into his phone until he did what nobody else had done; he checked the settings and tried to determine if it was a setting issue. It was. He changed one thing and, yes, the laptop keyboard worked.
I have three keys that don’t work; the g, h, and back space which means somewhere down the road I will have to either replace the keys or get a new keyboard. There is no rush however as I can now maneuver around the laptop. I repurchased the first keyboard and went home with a lighter heart and despite a day and a half of time lost, it could have been worse. It was his curious and creative mind, set on solving the mystery, that saved the day.
I will not denigrate the techs from Logitech, HP, or Staples as they did what they could within the parameters of their training but all it took was one curious mind to solve the problem. How does this relate to writing besides the forlorn gaping hole a novelist feels without their tools? It relates because it takes a curious and creative mind to create a story and bring it to a satisfying and well-honed conclusion. It takes trying what is familiar and known to unfamiliar and unknown solutions until something clicks and the story unfolds. I love the curious and creative mind.