Monday, September 21 2015 @ 09:23 AM EST
Writing Toolbox Intro: In this ongoing series of guest posts, I've invited a number of other authors to come along and show us what is in their Writing Toolbox, and tell us a little about how they approach the more 'mechanical' aspects of story writing. This week, West Australian author Lee Battersby shares the contents of his Writer's Toolbox...
Somewhere along the line, I appear to have become terribly old-fashioned. I started out, back in the late 80s, on a second-hand Imperial 80 typewriter, photocopying my stories at the local library for 4 cents a page and keeping my records on index cards in a card file. I didn't buy my first computer until I was in my second year of University—a second-hand Commodore 64 with a word processing program so inept I could only write one page at a time, and had to print that page before I could delete it and write the next page. All my of early short story sales—from 2001 to roughly 2006—were written in long-hand first, then transcribed into my computer as a second draft.
These days, I remain fairly uncomplicated as far as my technical requirements go. I use Word to create my stories, scripts and poetry. I keep my submissions and sales records on Excel spreadsheets. I save all my work to a funky 4GB Darth Vader thumb drive that's about to run out of space and a 1TB portable hard drive that also holds all my music, movies, photos and Real Life ™ faderal. If I'm feeling particulary funky, I will listen to my iPod or iTunes through a pair of bog-standard came-with-the-iPod earphones. And I type it all on a 5 year-old, bottom of the range Sony Vaio lap-top which sits on the kitchen table. If I need to research something I use Google, or take a fine-minute run to my local library. The only computer games I'm any good at are Baldur's Gate and Icewind Dale, too.
What it comes down to, I guess, is that I want my technology to be simple because anything too complicated gets between me and the work. Now get off my lawn!
Lee Battersby is the author of The Corpse-Rat King (2012) and Marching Dead (2013) from Angry Robot Books as well as the collection Through Soft Air (2006) and more than 70 stories hither, thither and yon, with publications in Australia, the US, and Europe. He lives in Western Australia with his wife, writer Lyn Battersby, a brood of kids, and a niggling sense of doom. http://battersblog.blogspot.com.au/
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