First of all, we need electronics. Oh, I know some writers swear by writing long-hand and some love their ancient typewriters. But most of us love computers. (And hate them as well, but that’s another topic.) Fax machines, copiers, scanners, printers, and of course, the laptop or desktop computer. Notebooks, netbooks, Ipads, Ipods, e-readers of all kinds–writers use them all. Some of us like our old faithful, with its ancient operating system and various word processing programs. Some, like me, like the newer models. (Although I did have to partition my Macbook Air because I write in a program that only Windows supports.)
We are fascinated with the Internet. The possibilities for research and ideas are endless. And email, while it can be a time sink, is also wonderful for communicating with other writers. Back in the dark ages, we had to send out chapters in the mail for our critique partners to read and comment on. It took forever. Now I can send a chapter through email to my critique partner in England and she can comment immediately. Assuming she isn’t asleep because of the time difference. I can send my entire manuscript in to my publisher and not have to depend on the post office. It’s quite a change.
But what we writers really love are office supplies. Pens! Oh, the possibilities of pens! Glitter pens, highlighters, ball point, glide, gel, sparkle. Erasable ink, fountain pens, fine point markers, thick line markers, markers of all varieties. Everything in a rainbow of colors! Oh, the pleasure to write and glide across the surface of your paper with that special pen. We’re certain they add to our creativity. How could they not, as pretty as they are? They’re actually useful too, particularly highlighters. You can use them to mark different viewpoints, different scenes, highlight important things in your manuscript that you want to be able to find again.
I must mention stickers, as I’ve only lately come to really appreciate them. Some of us like to use them to mark our progress. A line of stickers on the calendar to show that I’ve achieved my writing goal for a number of days is very inspiring. Besides, stickers are fun. The variety is astonishing. No longer do stickers only come as gold stars. Sparkly stickers, plain stickers, large and small stickers. Butterflies, dogs, cats, dinosaurs, stars, numbers, animals galore. Rainbows, castles, light bulbs. I could go on. There’s probably a sticker for anything you can dream up.
Look for me at Michael’s or Hobby Lobby in the sticker department along with all the teachers. Sometimes I pretend I’m buying them for my granddaughters, but they’re not even two yet. It’s my little secret.
Then there are clips. Paper clips, binder clips. Big clips, tiny clips. Again, in rainbows of colors. Index cards. Did you know index cards come in all varieties as well? White ones, colored ones, lined ones, colored lines. Making the decision what type to use can be very time consuming.
One of my personal favorites, sticky notes. They come in every conceivable color and every conceivable size. Tiny ones to mark things, large ones to write scenes on, or notes of any variety. And then there are the ones that have funny sayings or pictures. My problem with those is I like to save them. I can spend hours in the store just reading the funny ones.
More fun things are jump or flash drives. These small items are not only incredibly convenient to keep multiple copies of your current manuscript in case of computer malfunction or to keep up with different computers, but guess what? They come in all sizes, colors and varieties as well. I recently found Loony Toons jump drives. I chose Sylvester for my first one and let me tell you, I smile whenever I use it.
Santa Claus has an easy time with my stocking. All he has to do is fill it with office supplies and I’m a happy camper. What office supplies do you like?