I believe I was the only member of my 1984 college class (of about 100) to write my senior essay on a computer. I used a Kaypro II, running the CP/M operating system and a word processor called (IIRC) Perfect Writer. Nine-inch monochrome display. Text only, no graphics. No mouse. No multitasking. No modem. NO HARD DISK! Two 640KB floppy drives. You put the floppy with the program on it in drive A and the data disk in drive B.
I had an IBM Selectric console typewriter that connected to the computer with an RS-232 serial cable. The word processor allowed you to insert a special character that would pause the printing when fonts changed, so you could change the type ball. I used it for switching to italics and Greek characters.
I got compliments from instructors on the quality of the typography of my papers. (On the quality of the content, not so much.)
Later on, I got a smaller, lighter Brother typewriter/printer with daisy wheels like Bytegeist described. (Almost identical to thisone.)
Today the prospect of watching a printer typing one character at a time seems unbearably slow. But back then the notion of preparing your whole text on the computer, editing it, and changing it all around before printing out the final version was revolutionary. The luxury of watching the typewriter/printer rattling out your words as fast as it could run was just amazing, even if it took a couple of minutes per page and required switching fonts manually.
Before that, of course, you had to type out your drafts, make corrections by hand or **literally **cut and paste (or tape) the pages, then retype. You might have to do this two, three, or more times. If you were lucky or rich, your typewriter had that fancy self-correcting feature that lifted erroneous characters off the page invisibly. If not, you used correction tapes, or Wite-Out, or Og forbid, an eraser.
Kids these days don’t know how good they have it. Now get off my lawn, you whippersnappers!