stacksSlowly, my life is progressing to a paperless world. My personal bills are either taken out of my checking account directly, or I have my bank send a check. I haven’t had personal checks for years now and rarely need a stamp to mail something. I always use plastic and try to earn that cash back bonus, I can’t remember the last time I did business with anyone that didn’t take some form of credit card. I’ve converted many of my bills to e-bills and most of my statements have gone that way as well. I think online banking is a true wonder. How did we live without it?

Going paperless saves me money, too, there’s no paper or printer ink to buy. I’m not 100 percent there yet, but, I’m working on it. Don’t laugh and wonder why it took me so long, remember, this writer wrote her first book longhand, then typed it out on a portable typewriter! For many of us, writing actually went hand-in-hand with, well, uhhh, writing. There was a comfort in scribbling and scratching on paper. Just as it took me effort to learn to write and edit on a computer, reading on an e-reader is a new challenge. The hardest part is giving up the joy of holding and handling a physical book.

My work is gravitating to a paperless office as well. Every day we streamline and determine what really needs to be printed at all. We keep electronic copies of everything with the goal of going totally paperless. We take credit card payments through our tablet or smart phone, and almost all communication is via e-mail. We are expanding from one office into a national network by way of online software, video conferences and virtual contract support.

I have finally given up the need to print anything when writing, the last vestiges of that habit disappearing into the shredder for recycling. All writing and editing is done on the computer now, using Tracked Changes in Word on a regular basis as B and I exchange manuscripts back and forth between us. We also edit on our Kindles, e-mailing the files through our Amazon/Kindle account so we aren’t chained to our computers, using the handy highlight and/or notes features to catch errors as we read.

We bank online, and our transfers, deposits and statements are all electronic, easily accessible to us both. It’s like B and I live next door, not thousands of miles apart. We use DropBox to exchange documents and email to communicate. I think in two years, we’ve only spoken by phone once, but we email nearly every day. Then, there’s the marvel of e-books, our work shows up within hours of posting online. How great is that?