All writers know that there are some basic necessities that one needs in order to be able to write properly. These are amongst others, a clear and tidy space to work, a notebook for all the book ideas and status/management information, a mind map or brain dump, some initial thoughts and ideas typed up, good computer file management and so on.
In my new book, The handbook Of TOP TIPS To Manage Your Writing I go into a writers preparation in greater detail. Available on Kindle and Amazon in paperback form.
But, there are other perhaps less obvious pieces of kit that a writer should have to help them on their way. These are;-
a good printer – I have a 14 year old 16 page a minute laser jet printer, it has only jammed once and is on its third drum (each drum does 50,000 pages)
a scanner – this is becoming essential for all of the promo and publicity work a writer needs to do.
a colour copier, again like the scanner, an essential tool for hand outs, fliers, book promo and so on.
As well as my A4 laser jet I have an A4/A3 ink jet printer/scanner/copier/fax. I would be lost without A3/A4 copying and scanning.
A laminator. I have one that does up to A3 and down to business card size. It enables all those colour prints/promo and so on to be laminated and look professional.
An A3 slide guillotine (not a lever one). Again, being able to cut and shape paper into the correct size with a reliable neat straight edge is a must
An external hard drive. these are so cheap nowadays that for about £30 to £40 you can get a tera bite backup. Great value for total protection of all of your important computer files
A decent digital camera
A ready supply of pen drives. The more the merrier and always keep one with you, you never know when there is something or someone you meet that has information that can help you.
Some of the lesser know or overlooked items are
blue tac or other malleable adhesive
a good pair of sharp scissors
tape a plenty, both masking tape and other sticky tape
card and paper displayers. I have several of different sizes to be able to display my laminates or have my books presented at a nice angle, I have my book The Handbook Of TOP TIPS To Manage Your Writing standing using one in the right of the picture on the guillotine
All of these things aid the writer in giving the right impression as someone who takes their work seriously. When out and about at readings or craft fayres selling your work, a writer has to look and be as professional as they can be.
I know some of you are thinking, hang on a minute, these things don’t grow on trees. Yes, you are right, they cost. But so far I have had 14 years faultless service from my laser printer. It cost me about £140 14 years ago. That’s £10 per year or less than a pound a month. Cartridges and drums have cost about £350 over the 14 years, that’s about £2 per month. Not a lot when you think of the inconvenience of going to a printer and paying maybe 10p a copy, 5p if you are lucky and then there is the costs of getting to and from the printers. I live in a rural community and it cots me £10 in fuel to get to the printers. It adds up.
I know that in the UK, if a writer can demonstrate that his writing is serious and with the correct professional advise they can claim their essential costs against their tax.
As with most things in life, you get out what you are prepared to put in. For me, writing is a serious business and I make sure I have all of the tools that I need in order form me to work best as a writer. Those tools definitely include the technology and equipment to make my writing and presenting my writing as easy and professional as I can make it.
After all, if you are not prepared to invest in yourself and your writing, why should anyone else?