Going Paperless?

I have always been a staunch supporter of the paper and pen, so when my latest short story went from rough draft to final draft without ever being printed on paper, I had to wonder if I had taken a bold new step into the future. To be fair, I had made a number of paper notes before starting the story, but everything else was done with electrons.

I wrote the first draft of “The Gift” at weekend writing retreat. Previously I had lugged along a laser printer to these things, but the printer being out of ink, I left it behind, editing my work on screen and using a kindle for the Saturday night reading. Despite the lack of paper, all went well.

Of course, I figured I would print it out when I got home for further editing, but that didn’t happen. I ended up re-reading it and making editing notes on the kindle. With the final changes and corrections entered into the computer, it’s ready to submit, mostly via email.

The question remains if the editing process can be as efficient or effective without paper and pen, but I think it worked well for this project anyway. Some writers have pretty much gone paperless with their work. I’m not sure I’m ready to make that total commitment, but I have to admit I cringe every time I shell out $70 for a printer cartridge. And with this recent success, perhaps I’ll be doing that a little less.