I'm trying to go paperless. I rarely print anything out anymore. When I want to keep something someone else has written, I make a Word file, copy and paste information into it, then try to decide what to name it so I can find it again, and usually end up making a new "file folder" in My Documents. I tend to save whole emails, as well, especially from family. Sometimes new people get a file folder so I can remember details about them as we correspond. (But I do this less and less.)


Living in a motorhome tends to make a person try to save space, so I might be a bit more fanatical about all this than most people. But, I also use a laptop, sitting on a couch with my feet up, so it's nice not to have to get up to shift through paper or a file drawer, but just open a file in the computer and read it on-screen. I can even make changes to it as I read, or delete the whole thing with a tap on the touch pad, if I want to. I know a lot of people say it's really hard on the eyes to read things on-screen, and I have this problem, as well. It's a good idea to look away from the screen from time to time, and to get up every hour for about ten minutes to stretch and rest the eyes.


One thing I do is print out every story or novel at least once before sending it off, and with red pen in hand go through it again. But after I make changes in the computer version, I can throw out the printed version. I use both sides of the paper for these to save both money and maybe a bit of the environment. Seeing it on paper helps me find some minor problems, and sometimes even bigger ones.

My goal is to get rid of even more paper this year. I change out the household files every year after all the tax papers come in, and I plan to be more ruthless about that this year. I like the idea of being less cluttered--frees the mind to write.

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