Recently I was asked to submit some writing samples from my portfolio. That sounds like it should be easy enough; I’m a writer, I have samples. But I discovered that as hyper organized I am about my projects and time, my actual storage of my writing needs some work. Yes, all of my writing is on a computer – either the laptop or the desktop – possibly in Dropbox, or on a thumb drive in the desk drawer, or the end table drawer, or my purse. See, it took me all day to locate some writing samples that were “okay” and I don’t like my writing anyway so then I was depressed all night because the samples I selected I felt needed apologizing for. This is not the place I need to be in and I’m sure that many writers need to get their act together as well.

Writing is a profession. And we should treat it as such. I have a resume and portfolio that highlights everything I’m accomplished for every job/career I’ve had. Samples, charts, graphs, bullet points, you name it. Yet, my writing career? My passion in life? Yeah, squat. My stuff is scattered in random files, across several devices. Some have several drafts not labeled other than writing1 or story2. GAH! What is that?! That’s not how I am, so why did I do that? Apparently, I need work on this. Sooo, when I return from vacation and school resumes, I will be turning my hyper focused attention to organizing my writing and editing portfolio.

The best way to do this? Well, here’s my plan:

  1. Create a mega folder in Dropbox. This allow access to my writing from the desktop, laptop, tablet and phone.
  2. Inside the mega folder, create subfolder labeled with each writing – newspaper articles, short stories, novels, blogs, etc.
  3. Within each subfolder label the writing as draft1title, draft2title, draft3title, finishedtitle.
  4. Save each subfolder on it’s own LABELED thumb drive so I have a digital back up.
  5. Print each finishedtitle so I have a physical copy because I’m old. These will be stored in binders on the bookshelf.

I don’t know if the samples I sent will tickle the fancy of the editor. The odds are low. I’m not sad. However, the request did bring to light a glaring problem I have and for that I’m glad. How do you store your work? Do you treat your writing passion as a profession? Is your portfolio put together and organized? What is your system?

Very soon the submission window for the August/September issue will close. The theme is “That’s Gonna Leave A Mark.” So, if you’ve been damaged, traumatized, broken or bruised, write it down and let us know! We will begin accepting submissions for the October 2017 Issue. The theme will be “What Lies Beneath.” Any deep dark secrets? Skeletons in the closet or under the bed? Told any half-truths? Bet you can’t creep us out!

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