Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The "Green" Writing Challenge

As part of a personal to make my lifestyle a bit "greener," I took a look at my writing and how much it potentially affects the environment. Realizing there were a lot of things I could do to minimize this, I developed the Green Writing Challenge, and have made a commitment to green up my writing career this year.

What makes writing un-green? Here are some ways our job impacts the environment:

*Trees used to make thousands of sheets of paper, envelopes, pencils, and stamps we use to write, print, copy, and mail submissions and promotional materials...and produce the books themselves
*Emissions and fossil fuel use from autos, trucks, trains, and airplanes used to ship submissions, promotional items, and books worldwide
*Emissions and fossil fuel use traveling to and from book signings, conventions, speaking engagements, and other writing-related meetings and events
*Emissions and energy used from electronic devices: computers, monitors, laptops, printers, fax machines, palm pilots, copy machines, and cell phones

...and so on. Now, it's not possible to be in this business and have ZERO impact on the environment, but it is highly possible to reduce it. If every author made just one small change in their writing this year, how much energy would be saved? How many barrels of fossil fuels would be spared?

And thus I challenge YOU to participate in The Green Writing Challenge. Commit to just one "green" substitute this year, such as the following:

*Submit your next manuscript electronically
*Reduce the quantity in your next mass mailing
*Swap one mass mailing in favor of an electronic mailing
*Shrink your next mailing from a press kit or full sheet/envelope to a postcard
*Skip one convention and do an online conference instead
*Turn off your computer, printer, and other peripheral devices when not in use
*Do late-night writing by candlelight, or switch to energy-saving bulbs
*Forego one appearance/signing/tour and do a virtual book tour instead

Readers, Publishers, and can help Green Writing, too!
*Commit to buy at least one eBook this year
*Consider ePub or POD alternatives
*Look for energy-saving green technologies to apply to your business
*Support/patronize authors/publishers who commit to green technologies

Want to join The Challenge? Sign up on the official guestbook HERE, or visit my Squidoo lens and sign in HERE! Let me know what one change you will make this year.

Happy Greening!