Just like two scoops of raisins are better in your bran cereal, two computer monitors are definitely better on your writing desk.
I used the two-monitor trick to great effect when I worked in the technical realm. Now in my ongoing quest to improve my productivity–and make use of that extra screen that's been lying around–I'm putting the two-monitor method to work in my writing life.
I use a laptop, but on my current desk (read: dining room table), I have a flat screen monitor at the ready that I can plug into my MacBook any time I want another screen.
Why would I possibly want another screen? How about this?
- Instead of printing the comments your critique partner/contest judge gave you, just move that file to the extra screen and refer to it while you make changes.
- Open your character profiles or other reference materials and move them to the extra screen so they're at the ready while you're typing away.
- Open your Internet browser on the extra screen and you can reference your findings without leaving your manuscript.
The opportunities for multi-tasking, saving paper, being more productive, and procrastinating are endless!
Just today, I browsed the blogs while checking my Facebook page. Ahem. That is, I updated my query letter based on my critique partner's comments, without having to switch back and forth between the two documents, or waste paper by printing her file.
What's your favorite productivity trick?