I'm a packrat by nature. This can be a bad thing in terms of space and the fact that I may end up on an episode of Hoarders some day if I don't watch myself. This can be an excellent thing if I ever need to produce a bill from 2007 or a receipt from 2010.
Or if I ever need to prove that I wrote what I wrote.
I have documentation of damn near every step along the way - either electronic and hardcopy, and sometimes both. First draft, second draft, ad infinitum... editor notes, idea notes, etc.
Keeping everything I ever printed from my computer can become problematic, though. I used to, but the mountain was getting too tall and we were moving and into the shredder that stuff went. Now I only keep handwritten notes. In one of the those nifty expanding files thingies. One slot for each book.
Except when I get in a shredding frenzy like I did this morning and begin shredding notebook pages before I realize I meant to keep those. Bleh.
For the most part, though, it's all saved.
The notes I keep in the notebook until the notebook is full. Then I pull out all the pages and file them in their little slots. (I was keeping the notebooks themselves, but that was a little haphazard since I can use one 5-subject notebook for innumerable manuscripts.)
Sure, I have tons of things I won't ever need. Like the rejection letters from 2004. Like any rejection letter from the query process since I won't ever be doing that again. Or to paraphrase Edna Mode "That was the then, darling. I like to live in the now." Next time I go through those boxes in the storage closet, I'll cheerfully toss those bad devils.
Whenever that will be. In case you missed yesterday's post at The Writing Spectacle, I'm lazy.
What about you? Are you a packrat or do you only save what is absolutely necessary to your life now?