Today I printed up the pages of my novel. All 600 some pages. I’m going to go photocopy them later and ship them off to my writing buddy. The words part, though, is that I have to feed the pages to my bloody printer piece by piece because the damn wheels are dirty and if I pile empty pages in the feeder they just jam. The thing was $99 and too damn cheap and poor to buy a new one.
As I writer I deplore the amount of paper I use. I try to be conservative and only print what I need to, or stockpile old papers to print on the backsides of and double print whenever I can. I forced myself to read from the screen when I’d much rather have hard copy. But at a certain point you have to suck it and accept that your business is writing, and writing takes paper. Kudos to Rowling for trying for a more ecological alternative.
While I worked at a couple newspapers though I was appalled, simply appalled. Everyone printed EVERYTHING. Instead of forwarding emails they printed them up and handed them to you. My editor would print up old articles on a topic, when the same files are accessible on the internet. And then came the proofs, proof upon proof for the editors, the copy editors, everybody got one. By the end of the day I swear a whole forest had been destroyed. And then the newspaper gets printed, and the next day the whole thing happens again.
So much for the electronic age.