Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 77

Thread: Sneaking in writing at work...any tricks?

  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW srgalactica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Near Los Angeles
    Posts
    468

    Sneaking in writing at work...any tricks?

    Sooo...*glances around office innocently, while whistling* Do any of you attempt to get any writing done at work? If so, do you have any sneaky writing-on-the-job tricks? ie, writing on a small notepad that you can ditch into your drawer quickly?



  2. #2
    Travel biologist, piss-poor fluffer quicklime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    wisconsin
    Posts
    8,481
    Quote Originally Posted by srgalactica View Post
    Sooo...*glances around office innocently, while whistling* Do any of you attempt to get any writing done at work? If so, do you have any sneaky writing-on-the-job tricks? ie, writing on a small notepad that you can ditch into your drawer quickly?

    don't get caught?

    I write in word, which is hardly a unique program to have open, but I also have an office. I loathe writing on paper, but a notepad is an option...although you trying to quick cram it in your desk like you got caught holding meth isn't gonna exactly be "below the radar."



    anyway, I just write in Word, and write away. You could minimize likelihood of being seen by doing it during lunch, or first thing in the AM when folks are busiest, or late in the afternoon when they're leaving, or in fifteen-minute bursts so they don't wonder why your keyboard is going bonkers for an hour straight.
    Three words that convey the meaning of six will always look better than twelve...


    a' traveling:
    --April 20th week: Miami
    --April 27th week: Dallas
    --First week of May: Chicago (again)

  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW Dreity's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    861
    I have a tiny moleskin notebook that I keep in my purse, but I only write when I am on breaks. I'm stocking shelves or otherwise maintaining the sales floor when I'm not on register, so I can't really get away with scribbling on the clock, unless it's a snippet of a sentence that I need to write down before I forget. Although, in my experience, the stuff I "needed" to put down right that instant ended up being junk later. Even with my awful memory, I always remember the genuinely good stuff.
    My shiny new Twitter. 140 or less is hard.

    My Blog. Longer stuff, but still trying to cut down.

  4. #4
    practical experience, FTW srgalactica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Near Los Angeles
    Posts
    468
    Quote Originally Posted by quicklime View Post
    don't get caught?

    I write in word, which is hardly a unique program to have open, but I also have an office. I loathe writing on paper, but a notepad is an option...although you trying to quick cram it in your desk like you got caught holding meth isn't gonna exactly be "below the radar."



    anyway, I just write in Word, and write away. You could minimize likelihood of being seen by doing it during lunch, or first thing in the AM when folks are busiest, or late in the afternoon when they're leaving, or in fifteen-minute bursts so they don't wonder why your keyboard is going bonkers for an hour straight.
    I may try Word. I work at a video game development company though, so I'm wondering if our CTO monitors our keystrokes. lol. I'll have to ask my trusted co-worker in IT is that's the case or not.



  5. #5
    Widely Regarded as a Bad Move DanielaTorre's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    The Lost Moon of Poosh
    Posts
    1,159
    Psht. I am a MASTER at writing at work. Hell, I'm at work right now, being the most being the most terrible employee ever. But I've been working here for 6 years. As long as I get my work done, no prob.

    It's a very difficult thing to do because you constantly have coworkers milling about. It's also difficult because it's hard to concentrate... on writing. So I do most copy editing at work, not REAL writing. Only at certain times when the office empties out.

    Doing it at an office is quite easy especially if you have Dropbox where you can access your ms from any computer. THis eliminates the hazards of leaving memory sticks at work by accident and losing your work. Writing while on your feet like a nurse or department store is a little harder. Sneak a notebook into your pocket and write if something important comes to mind.

  6. #6
    The Surreal Thing AW Moderator Maryn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Beneath Gloomy Skies
    Posts
    34,494
    Is it really worth the risk of losing your job?

    And not to be the uptight hard-ass (which I guess I am, alas), but aren't they paying you to work?

    I know it's tempting to use some of the long, long workday, but it seems like a bad idea on multiple levels to do more than a quick jot on company time. During lunch and breaks, knock yourself out.

    Where Mr. Maryn works, one discovery of writing on the job would probably get you major negative points on your employee evaluation. A second one, I doubt they'd keep you.

    Maryn, honest day's work for pay
    Kindness. It doesn't cost a damned thing. If you're smart, you'll spread that stuff all over the place.

    Brick by Brick, a ménage à trois novel
    Taming the Wilde, spotted--and striped--in the wild
    Maryn Says
    , an irregular blog
    The Occasional Tweet

  7. #7
    blue eyed floozy shakeysix's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    St. John, Kansas
    Posts
    8,095
    Several times a year I find myself at all day faculty meetings. We are expected to take notes so I do --only I am really drafting stories, in Spanish! More productive than day dreaming and it hones my Spanish skills. By the way- I am a Spanish teacher. If anything important comes up I have my pen and paper in hand and can switch to actual notes without switching language. --s6 PS--maybe being a Gemini helps.

  8. #8
    practical experience, FTW srgalactica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Near Los Angeles
    Posts
    468
    Quote Originally Posted by Maryn View Post
    Is it really worth the risk of losing your job?

    And not to be the uptight hard-ass (which I guess I am, alas), but aren't they paying you to work?

    I know it's tempting to use some of the long, long workday, but it seems like a bad idea on multiple levels to do more than a quick jot on company time. During lunch and breaks, knock yourself out.

    Where Mr. Maryn works, one discovery of writing on the job would probably get you major negative points on your employee evaluation. A second one, I doubt they'd keep you.

    Maryn, honest day's work for pay
    I have tons of down time where I have absolutely nothing to do, which is why I'm constantly on the internet, which is acceptable in my line of work at a video game development company.

    My issue is more that my writing is personal and I really don't want anyone at work reading it, (unless it's all pretty and polished and on a bookshelf in Barnes and Nobel) which is why I was thinking of writing in a notebook, but then I get paranoid about someone reading over my shoulder and thinking I'm a freak for some of the stuff I write. lol



  9. #9
    ...it's anything but. AW Moderator amergina's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    12,588
    I take my laptop to work and write while on my lunch break.

    That way, I don't use any corporate assets for my personal projects and I write off-the-clock, as it were.
    Stories n' Stuff:
    Close Quarter and Slow Waltz (M/M paranormal romance)
    Missing Persons (fantasy short) in Trust and Treachery
    Takeover (M/M contemporary romance)
    CTRL Me in Rules to Live By (M/M contemporary romance)

    COMING June 16th: Just Business (M/M contemporary romance)

    I have a Website! My Pen Name has a Website! I also Tweet!

  10. #10
    Widely Regarded as a Bad Move DanielaTorre's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    The Lost Moon of Poosh
    Posts
    1,159
    Quote Originally Posted by amergina View Post
    I take my laptop to work and write while on my lunch break.

    That way, I don't use any corporate assets for my personal projects and I write off-the-clock, as it were.
    Trust me, the corporation will always use more of your assets that you will ever use of it.

  11. #11
    Pinkamena Diane Pie chloecomplains's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Atlanta
    Posts
    75
    I used to wait tables and it was perfect, because I always had a pad of paper in my hand.

    If you're already typing at work and have access to standard email, just type it that way. You can even shape it to look like a standard email so if people glance at your screen, they won't suspect anything. Plus, you can ditch it at any second by hitting the send button.

  12. #12
    Just keep swimming... electroweakstar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    DC Metro
    Posts
    101
    We have kind of a loose "take breaks when you need to" policy here at work, because so much of what we do is repetitive. Most people spend that time doing schoolwork (a lot of grad students here), or on Facebook or texting, so I can definitely pull up a Google Doc and get to work. I do 90% of my work on Google Drive anyway; never have to keep track of which file is the newest or whatever.

    I also have a Galaxy Note 2, so I can do some re-reading, editing, and swype-ing on my phone during breaks or even at my desk. Or *coff* in the loo. *shifty eyes*

    My partner takes one of those ASUS tablets with the keyboard to work so he can do his writing/editing during his lunch and breaks.

    ETA: This is not to say I'm always successful at work. It's often difficult for me to change gears from what I do all day, back to my characters.
    Last edited by electroweakstar; 02-06-2013 at 01:42 AM.
    **********************************
    Call me ACP!

    Untitled near-future Spy Thriller - 35K
    Untitled Futuristic Steampunk - 6000 and.. AAAUGH.
    Colony 743 (Sci Fi Romance?) - 450 word Prologue/Concept for short story
    The Last Village (low fantasy) - needs rewrite

    My neglected blog
    Follow me on Twitter

  13. #13
    More cowbell! randi.lee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    New England, USA
    Posts
    1,018
    I minimize my Word doc as small as it'll go and leave it hanging out in the background. When I have a thought I type a few sentences & the window's so small no one can see it.
    Facebook | Twitter
    The Emotional Process of Writing a Novel

    Please try not to take me too seriously. What I've posted above is most likely in jest.

    Snap! A Quite Quick Collection now available on Amazon.

  14. #14
    Snow? Already? Shadow_Ferret's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    In a world of my own making
    Posts
    23,508
    *Glances over to see if Maryn is listening*

    I write in a notebook on breaks or when there's downtime. And really, how do they know I'm not taking notes or working On a project? But I don't because that would be wrong! *nods at Maryn*


    Our IT is very tight. There's no way I could access Dropbox or google docs. If they aren't outright blocked, which I haven't checked, then they'd be heavily monitored. Same as email. So I couldn't write in Word then send it home. And we're not allowed to use flash drives.
    Twitter | Pinterest | WordPress | Tumblr

    “I love words but I don’t like strange ones. You don’t understand them and they don’t understand you. Old words is like old friends, you know ‘em the minute you see ‘em.” -- Will Rogers

    "Blame it on my ADD, baby." -- AWOLNATION

  15. #15
    Azarath Metrion Zinthos AshleyEpidemic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Austin
    Posts
    1,454
    I just write. I take any opportunity I get. Some days it is ten minutes. Some days it is a couple hours. I stop when there is something I need to do. Once it is done, I resume my writing.

    It is more productive than lurking the internet, like I am doing now. I have some editing to do. Off I go!

    ETA: Everyone at work knows that I write. They are okay with it as long as I am getting my work done. Which I do. In fact, they often ask how things are going. But I work at a small company. It really depends on your work environment and the company's culture and rules.
    Last edited by AshleyEpidemic; 02-06-2013 at 03:34 AM.
    So, I have this blog. It's here
    and a book blog
    I tweet too.

  16. #16
    empty-nester! shadowwalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SE Minnesota
    Posts
    5,004
    If I'm at a place where downtime is "do whatever to pass the time", I have a paper notebook to write in. If I'm at a place where work time is work time, I'm with Maryn. At those places, you're not being paid to write, you're being paid to work, even if you have to GASP! find something productive to do. (Speaking as someone who's watched other workers fiddle away their time while I'm picking up their slack, I have little sympathy for 'cheating'.)
    Je suis Charlie

    "It seems rather like wanting to be ... a writer, rather than wanting to write. It should be a by-product, not a thing in itself. Otherwise, it's just an ego trip." - Roger Zelazny

    Passion is easy; commitment is hard.

  17. #17
    practical experience, FTW
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    110
    At the risk of being a party-pooper, I concur with Maryn. Unless your boss specifically says, "do whatever you want to kill some time," you're being paid to work for them. If empty time opens up, you fill it in by taking on an additional chore, innovating, something that benefits the firm that pays your wage. If you're on break, lunch, etc., it's a different matter, but when on the clock it's their clock. Guess I'm old fashioned!

  18. #18
    υπείκωphobe Wilde_at_heart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Southern Ontario
    Posts
    3,250
    Quote Originally Posted by electroweakstar View Post
    We have kind of a loose "take breaks when you need to" policy here at work, because so much of what we do is repetitive. Most people spend that time doing schoolwork (a lot of grad students here), or on Facebook or texting, so I can definitely pull up a Google Doc and get to work. I do 90% of my work on Google Drive anyway; never have to keep track of which file is the newest or whatever.

    I also have a Galaxy Note 2, so I can do some re-reading, editing, and swype-ing on my phone during breaks or even at my desk. Or *coff* in the loo. *shifty eyes*

    My partner takes one of those ASUS tablets with the keyboard to work so he can do his writing/editing during his lunch and breaks.

    ETA: This is not to say I'm always successful at work. It's often difficult for me to change gears from what I do all day, back to my characters.
    ASK your IT friend...

    Having said that, how dedicated would IT people be to keyloggers, etc. anyway? In my old workplace a guy got busted for porn but he was streaming videos, which took up a fair amount of server space or whatever, which is what made IT notice to begin with.

    So long as all your work is done, it's your manager's problem if they aren't giving you enough to do, not yours. (And yes, I know all about 'managing up', but workload beyond what you're assigned is not your job to take care of unless you're keen to climb the ranks).

  19. #19
    practical experience, FTW Write_Askew's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    143
    I used to write on my lunch breaks. I always emailed myself...I could write in the open email and I could send it to myself when I needed to. Then I could copy and paste it over into my email inbox.

    That said, unless you're certain that this won't get you in trouble, stick to your lunch breaks and whatever. Your job is important. Maryn's right, they're paying you to do their stuff. As a former office manager myself, I can safely say, there's always something extra you can be doing. And that, my friend, might earn you and raise or a promotion that might enable you to take off time to write...

  20. #20
    practical experience, FTW srgalactica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Near Los Angeles
    Posts
    468
    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff Mehl View Post
    At the risk of being a party-pooper, I concur with Maryn. Unless your boss specifically says, "do whatever you want to kill some time," you're being paid to work for them. If empty time opens up, you fill it in by taking on an additional chore, innovating, something that benefits the firm that pays your wage. If you're on break, lunch, etc., it's a different matter, but when on the clock it's their clock. Guess I'm old fashioned!
    Uh, yeah. I wouldn't be doing it at all if it wasn't ok. I just don't want people reading my stuff in it's obvious crappy first-draft state.

    We can do whatever we want when there's down time.



  21. #21
    practical experience, FTW
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
    301
    I use my smartphone in my free time.
    I’ll either use Google docs, make a draft post on my super-secret personal blog (which is full of nothing but drafts ), or use something else like email/onenote/etc.

    Basically, anything that slows me to save it over the internet.
    Currently working on: Radiant (I seriously need a better title for this)

  22. #22
    Tribal Scribe Neporsche's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Street of the Gods
    Posts
    1,875
    I write on my lunchtime ... That's about it.
    You have been criticizing yourself for years and that hasn't worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens. - Louise Hay

    Life is not always a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well.- Jack London

  23. #23
    The Surreal Thing AW Moderator Maryn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Beneath Gloomy Skies
    Posts
    34,494
    If you've got the green light to do your own stuff, that's a different matter. I used to know a guy who was in chat rooms for hours a day at work. He was a fireman. They didn't care what he was doing, so long as he dropped everything when the alarm sounded.

    So, are you worried about your colleagues reading what you're writing, or about IT people accessing it, or both?

    If it's the passerby reading over your shoulder that's got you cringing, consider rearranging your work space to face the opening rather than have your back to it. Not possible? Yeah, I was afraid of that. Then do what you can to make it difficult to read at a casual glance, and have a one-keystroke way to minimize it when you realize you've got a gawker. Consider tiny font size, or something with lots of swirls and loops, both damned near impossible to make out at a glance.

    If it's IT, well, I would presume that if you're on their system, they have the means to see what you've been up to. If it's really personal or not appropriate, then you should be writing it by hand or on your own computer or other device.

    Maryn, who wrote hard-core erotica with school-age kids hovering--it can be done
    Kindness. It doesn't cost a damned thing. If you're smart, you'll spread that stuff all over the place.

    Brick by Brick, a ménage à trois novel
    Taming the Wilde, spotted--and striped--in the wild
    Maryn Says
    , an irregular blog
    The Occasional Tweet

  24. #24
    practical experience, FTW srgalactica's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Near Los Angeles
    Posts
    468
    Quote Originally Posted by Maryn View Post
    If you've got the green light to do your own stuff, that's a different matter. I used to know a guy who was in chat rooms for hours a day at work. He was a fireman. They didn't care what he was doing, so long as he dropped everything when the alarm sounded.

    So, are you worried about your colleagues reading what you're writing, or about IT people accessing it, or both?

    If it's the passerby reading over your shoulder that's got you cringing, consider rearranging your work space to face the opening rather than have your back to it. Not possible? Yeah, I was afraid of that. Then do what you can to make it difficult to read at a casual glance, and have a one-keystroke way to minimize it when you realize you've got a gawker. Consider tiny font size, or something with lots of swirls and loops, both damned near impossible to make out at a glance.

    If it's IT, well, I would presume that if you're on their system, they have the means to see what you've been up to. If it's really personal or not appropriate, then you should be writing it by hand or on your own computer or other device.

    Maryn, who wrote hard-core erotica with school-age kids hovering--it can be done
    Yeah. I think I better assume my writing might be seen if I work on my work computer. Like I said, I wouldn't get in trouble, but it was hard enough for me to show my boyfriend my writing for the first time. I can't imagine letting work people see it.

    I'll work on a notebook. I'd work on my MS Surface, but it's too much trouble to put it away every time I leave my desk, which is often. It's easier to toss a notebook into a drawer.

    Thanks for all of the ideas and feedback. Just struggling to find a way to get some writing in, with my busy schedule. I'm usually either at work, at the gym, commuting, or hanging out with the BF. May have to talk with him about us both working on our writing when we hang out, instead of watching TV. Gotta get this trilogy done, dangit!



  25. #25
    Travelling around the sun cbenoi1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    2,226
    Quote Originally Posted by srgalactica View Post
    Do any of you attempt to get any writing done at work? If so, do you have any sneaky writing-on-the-job tricks?
    Depending on the company, some employment contracts specify that anything developed while at work (using company equipment, and/or during company time, and/or while representing the company, etc) is rightfully owned by the company. Copyrights and all. I've seen it more than once.


    You're better off discussing the matter with the employer and agree on the time period where such personal work is allowed and make sure this work is all yours (all the IP rights) and not your employer's.

    -cb

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Custom Search