Lots of times at events I meet people who are obviously very knowledgeable about their subject and can speak well and enthusiastically. When I talk to them about blogging as a way for them to reach more people and show off their expertise, they say that what holds them up is that they don’t like writing.

You might be interested to know that this entire post is being “written” while my hands are in my pockets! Today I’ve been trying out a cool tool that should help bloggers who really don’t like writing. It’s called Dragon Naturally Speaking.
Dragon Naturally Speaking is a piece of voice recognition software.  I picked it up from the oneNetworkDirect stand Affiliate summit in Miami.  I’m really grateful to the guys for handing me a free copy as using the software is a million times better for me to be able to describe it than just reading the back of the packet.

The Summit was over nine months ago.  I haven’t got round to using it because I’m actually quite comfortable writing  – I’m very lucky that my mother is an English teacher – so writing is not something I really struggle with.

However, one of my staff is dyslexic, she’s a great designer and a good developer too so it doesn’t really get in the way of the job, but she still needs to write to clients, and that’s where the dyslexia has been holding her up. I really didn’t know anything about dyslexia until I met her, and we been working together to try and find some solutions that might help, and I dug out the software again after I saw her trying a similar product.

As well as the software all you need is a basic microphone.  I’m using the same Plantronics headset, as I used when I was recording the demonstrations of the Affilistore affiliate software.

The programme takes about half an hour 40 minutes to set up the first time you use it. You have to repeat some text that’s shown on the screen so that the software trains to your own voice, so access to a quiet room so that your colleagues don’t think you’ve gone loopy is a must when you first begin. After that, I really believe that it saves a lot of time. It has taken a few minutes to edit the punctuation in the post and correct a few words that it doesn’t recognise yet, but editing a post that you haven’t actually typed is a completely different experience and you pick up things you would never have spotted otherwise.
My typing speed is okay, but it certainly not as fast as I can talk, I also picked up a little dictaphone, which means I can record ideas while walking to work.

Then I just edit and post or e-mail them as soon as I arrive at the office.  I get most of my best ideas when I’m nowhere near my computer so I really think this will help and can really recommend it to anyone who is suffering from writer’s block every time they sit at a computer.

You can stick on a headset microphone and stare out the window for inspiration, and still be productive.

So once again thanks to the guys at oneNetwork for this handy tool.