Friday, February 11, 2011

Reflections of a Disordered (but VERY creative) Mind

My boss gently pointed out yesterday that perhaps my record keeping skills are not where she would like them.  Perhaps not even mediocre.  As a scientist, keeping good records is pretty important.  Although I would argue that creativity is a big deal, too.  Unfortunately, I put my 99% into inspiration and 1% into perspiration, and I think it's supposed to be the other way around.  I would like to point out, however that I DO write almost everything down.  It's just usually on a paper towel or in Farsi. 


I have the same problem with writing fiction.  ADHD much?  I am making yet another stab at organization and record keeping.  One of my complaints about modern science is that there are way too many places to keep information.  The old fashioned way was to put it in a lab notebook. By hand.  With ink. 

I have one, and I like it, I use it as a kind of a journal of what I am working on.  Unfortunately, I am working on a bunch of different things, so one experiment may cover six non-consecutive pages, so chasing down information requires some indexing, which is usually beyond me. 

So I also have a bunch of looseleaf binders.  I can photocopy pages from the lab journal, and put them in the binder (Yeah, right).

The Before Picture
Except there is this thing called a computer. 
And the boss likes the computer.  She likes having every thing typed in exquisite detail.  Whatever. 
Okay, so I'm on board with that.  I can type up my experiment notes in Word, make and Excel sheet of data, make a little Powerpoint of the results and even keep it all in the same folder. I can email each file to my boss for her to work on.   But where do I keep the folder?  On the desktop, where it is easy to find while the experiment is active.  In documents when I am about done with it.  But wait, there is more!  We have a shared departmental drive where we really keep the bulk of our data...but if I change something in one file, I have to go around and change it in the bajillion places I have the experiment stored. 

And don't let me get started on the Flash Drives.

And then there is the fiction thing.  Eee Gads!  How do you all keep your writing organized?  HELP! 


  1. LOL. Not very well. I do okay at work with the shared drives and desktop folders, but in my fiction I have desktop folders, rogue files, and at least two notebooks. What a disaster. I might write faster if I'd get "organizized," to quote Rbt. DeNiro.

  2. I....



    Good Luck!


  3. Organized? Hahahahhaha!

    Oh, wait...were you serious? I, um, well...I do keep my WIPS in separate files on my computer desktop. Does that count?