Does being left handed effect literary style?

Astro Pen

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Just read an article on differences between right and left handed people.
(I am a boring old righty btw)
I wondered if it has any impact on the way they create and write stories. Are there, maybe, even hidden clues as to the handedness of the author?
Statistically we must have quite a few left handers posting on chrons. Do you feel your writing process different to the majority?
 

sknox

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Doesn't affect them, either.

The article is typical of sloppy reporting, or at least sloppy writing. After citing various scientific sources, in which nothing more is claimed than that there are detectable differences in the brain regarding motor functions, the article then leaps to a flat assertion, with no supporting evidence.
"The fact that they must do daily tasks in a society that caters to people with a different dominant hand makes them think differently in everyday life."

It rhetorically, but not factually, reinforces that with a typically ambiguous sentence
"Creative thinking is necessary when living life as a left-hander, which may lead to better adaptability and problem-solving skills in professional life."
The conditional "may" is of course key. But by this point in the article, those readers disposed to think left-handedness does indeed affect creativity will read this as an actual assertion.

Next comes a revealing case of using sources improperly. The article cites another article, this one in a business magazine called Fast Company. That article in turn cites a psychologist names Yvonne Thomas, who makes some assertions that both magazines quote without any supporting material. The assertion of lefty creativity isn't even anecdotal, it's just something Thomas said. This is not a good use of sources, still less use of evidence, but here's the revealing bit.

The next paragraph opens with this: "These left-handed statistics paint a fascinating picture of what handedness can influence. Left-handed people facts suggest that their unique perspective on the world leads to different behaviors and strengths."
While "left-handed people facts" is an amusing phrase, note that we have now leaped over to "statistics". Oooh, statistics. It must be true! Oh, just ignore the conditional "can" in the sentence. Statistics! Other than the item about what percentage of the population is left-handed, there haven't been any statistics. The article closes with nothing more than a suggestion, but the rhetorical tone sounds totally scientific. Totally.

But let's leave all that aside. Once in a while the history professor in me comes out from his cave and can be, I admit, a little snarly. I really ought to give him a term paper to grade once in a while, just to help him sleep.

Leaving aside the writing critique, I don't care for the tendency to reduce humans to left-brain vs right-brain, creative vs analytical, or other polar divisions. As the old adage says, the world can be divided into two types of people: those who divide the world into two types of people, and those who don't.

As a writer (and a historian, I suppose), I focus on the fascinating variety of humans, our panoply rather than our poles. What are we always telling each other? Avoid stereotypes! Here's my creative-type character and oh looks, they're left-handed. We wouldn't even let that one in the door.

In other words, I don't want any of that to be true. I want people to be people. Some use their left hand, some their right, some both, and some don't even have hands. The ways in which they face (or don't face) challenges are myriad and fascinating and peculiar to each individual.

(Back to your cave, professor. Scoot!)
 

Flaviosky

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Well, I have a twin brother that is left handed and we both dwelled into writing together but later each of us continued writing their own stuff.

Aside from differences in personalities, I may say that our writing styles differ way more than our personalities may suggest. I don't know if it's anything related to being left or right handed by itself, but considering that brains of left-handed people do work diferently in terms of how the hemispheres work, I think there may be an influence.

His style is much more detailed and descriptive. Structured, focused on worldbuolding I may say, than mine, and that sounds logical by how this brain thing works.

But well, I think it's a funny thing to address.
 

THX1138

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Ambidextrous dyslexic here...I use to do collegic fencing. R, L handed opponents, no problem.

Writing is difficult at time though. R L hemispheres trying to go with and against each other causes me to type slow in order to get things out.
Ever get motion sick from reading or writing on dry land?
But give me something mechanical to do, no problems at all.

But to stay on track with the topic, I do see a difference with me depending how I think and which hand I use as my dominant at the time, even while typing.
Kind of shows up in my 100 word stories from the last challenge. (13 total and there is a difference that I see.)
 

THX1138

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To clarify myself in regard to R L typing and my 100 word entries.
In Between, Sakura, The Map are all 100% Left hand finger picked typing.

The Perspectives is your standard two handed typing with a fair amount of left-handed picking.

All the rest are your standard two handed typing.

So, I do see a difference as for me. But I digress, sorry!

In all, I tend to agree with @Flaviosky, in that the few left-handed writers that I do know are like his twin brother in their writing styles.
Anyway, hope I got back on track with the discussion.
 

.matthew.

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"The fact that they must do daily tasks in a society that caters to people with a different dominant hand makes them think differently in everyday life."
I found that funny too, and I'm one of those dishonest dishonourable soulless lefties. I've not noticed any fundamental differences in life from anyone else since I was at school... when my elbow used to bump against the person sitting next to me.

I suppose scissors are different as well, but I just learned to use them righthanded and problem solved.

Well, I have a twin brother that is left handed and we both dwelled into writing together but later each of us continued writing their own stuff.

His style is much more detailed and descriptive. Structured, focused on worldbuolding I may say, than mine, and that sounds logical by how this brain thing works.
I'd guess that if you started together, you each focused on a specific aspect of the writing, yin and yang, which then matured into different styles.
 

AnyaKimlin

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I'm ambidextrous with a slightly dominant right hand and dominant left foot, My left hand writing is legible but less fluent and I can no longer write with both hands at once. I found it really helped when I started to learn to type as both hands come into play. I do find I am more creative when I type than when I handwrite.

The left handed people in my life (I know a fair amount and I find it interesting how many young people are lefties) tend to be more scientific/engineering inclined. In my mechanics course over a third of the young men were lefties.
 

THX1138

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Lefty here and rubbish writer.
I can't draw or paint ( unless walls count).
So i don't think I'm creative or have a unique perspective on things.
Nonsense, you're here on Chronicles with over 7K posts so that says something!
And you, like me, have a unique perspective on things. Just write/draw/paint how YOU see it, then fill in the blank parts as it makes sense to you.
Bugger the rest and how they look over or misunderstand what you see. Others will get it! :)

I can go on and get very overboard with this, but not today my friend. (I have a Scottish Great Grand---father from the 1790's, and his blood is strong in me!) So much for the Eastern European!

But really, don't underestimate your abilities or influence. Especially here on Chrons!
 

Stephen Palmer

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I'm left handed and have done considerable amounts of reading on the topic. While the old left/right brain tropes are greatly exaggerated, there's plenty of solid research to show that the right brain and left brain process different types of information, and sometimes in a different way. The fact that 90% of people are left brained (where the main language centre is almost always located) is just one example. So the best way of saying it is to say that right brained people are statistically more likely to be creative in some way, or, if not, to have an untapped potential for creativity. I am reminded of a quote offered by a famous brain surgeon: right handed people have brains like chocolate soldiers - all alike. But every brain I've operated on in a left hander was unique in some way.
 

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