Tools of the Trade

Everyone has tools they like to use. A favorite pen or pencil. A certain way they like to write. If I remember correctly I think Ernest Hemingway liked to write standing up. Other authors wrote lying down, or needed #2 pencils and yellow legal pads. I mean…authors are known for their quirks.

Me? I love a good old fashioned pen and notebook. I love feeling the scratch of the pen against the paper. Getting ink on my fingers. It makes me feel like a writer. I love getting my hands ‘dirty’. But like any author I think about worse case scenarios: What if my notebook gets lost? What if there’s a fire? Then what? I’d lose all of my notes, scenes, countless words and scenes would vanish.

Here are some of the things that I’ve been doing lately that might help you.

  1. USB Flash drives: I have a few dozen of these little guys running around my house. All of them have stories, old and new. I’m currently carrying my latest WIP’s in a flash drive that I carry in my purse.
  2. Email: I also email stuff to myself all the time. It’s a great back up. This little trick has saved my butt more times than I can count.
  3. Notebooks: I love, LOVE my moleskine notebooks. I carry them with me everywhere. Although, I have to be careful where I keep them now that I have a 2 year old that likes to chew everything. Seriously, he’s literally eaten parts of my manuscripts. Nothing is sacred.
  4. Print: I’ll print out my entire manuscript and shelve it with my books. Of course it’s not fun when your adorable two year old decides it’s time to pull every single book off the shelves and your manuscripts tumble on to the floor. Sigh. But at least they’re in one piece. 😀
  5. Livescribe: Okay…anyone that knows me personally knows that I love technology and all sorts of gadgets. LOVE THEM. So of course, I geeked out when I found this pen.

At first I thought that it was going to take my notes and transcribe them for me (which would save my hands from an early carpul tunnel syndrome) but alas it doesn’t do that. But it will record your notes and put them in It will also record your notes, which is pretty cool. Anyway I really like this pen. It takes a little bit of getting used to but every day I click ‘sync’ I know that my notes are in a safe place.

What are some of the things you do to save your work? What are some of the things you worry about when it comes topreserving your work?


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