Retail Therapy for Writers No. 2

Want to get away from writing and go shopping? Me too. It's been a rough week, filled with the sound of ceramic tile being broken into a zillion pieces to make way for the new ceramic tile in part of my home.

For what shall we shop?

1. How about something to make filing easier? One of the best things I ever bought was a Dymo Label Maker. The one I've got runs on AC power or battery. I buy the label tape that's black print on white background. You'd be surprised how legible and neat my file cabinet looks now. My daughter liked it so much she stole my first Dymo to use in her classroom. (Bad daughter.)

Several companies make label makers, but I've been very pleased with my Dymo. It looks very similar to image shown here. I keep it on my desk so it's always handy.

2. Next, get some of those file folders with dividers inside them. I've found these indispensable in organizing the contents of a file. Contracts can go in one section. Correspondence in another. I even keep a hard copy of the writing rubber-banded and in the file folder if it's article writing. If it's novel-length, the hard copy gets its own file folder.

Yes, I make hard copies in addition to having the file on my computer and backed up on external hard drive and flash drives. Every few months I also make a backup copy on CD. Where data is concerned, redundancy is a good thing. (Ah, I think I have the subject for another blog, another day.)

3. A real file cabinet. I'm the one surprised when I see how many beginning and even pro writers keep their files in boxes or desk drawers. Get the genuine article and file stuff away each week. Then when you need that research material you printed on "earthquakes in Greece" or the email from someone who offered to review your book, you'll be able to find it.

Real file cabinets with locking drawers don't cost that much. Even the non-locking variety is better than a cardboard box. Plus, as a working writer, they are a tax deductible item for your home office as are all the things listed today.

Spend money AND get a deduction. What a great country!

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