While writing the morning pages today I caught myself reusing the same words over and over; although those sessions aren't intended to be perfect, to have anything ready to publish, I still chastised myself for a lack of imagination and vocabulary.
When writing digitally it is so easy to find alternatives, substitutes. I have things installed on my phone that easily allow me to look up words and check synonyms, meaning, context, but when writing by hand I only possess my wits and memory - things that have been failing me likely due to the overreliance on technology.
I don't believe I've owned a paper dictionary or thesaurus for over 20 years - that's criminal when you think about it.
I can recall times from my late teens and early twenties when I would spend hours getting lost in a thesaurus, going from page to page, entry to entry, finding ever more obscure connections between words, words that have long since left my lexicon.
The well thumbed and annotated thesaurus has been replaced by a pristine app; the physical, tactile act of turning the pages (that used to build a sense of suspense) has been superseded by the simple click or tap.
Things are easier, quicker, more convenient, but I'm not entirely sure that's progress.