Monday, February 25, 2019

The Genius and Usefulness of Post-its by Cheryl Bolen


Little did I realize the first time I ever saw little yellow Post-its in the early 1980s how much I would come to rely on them. I still remember my awe that this paper could stick—and stick without leaving any residue and still be able to stick again.

I am not alone in my admiration of this product, first patented by 3M. One would have to look far and wide to find someone who hadn’t used these nifty little sheets of re-adherable  paper.

Businesses, too, widely use these strips in a variety a ways, including those little arrows directing clients where to sign documents. 

Here's my current list of groceries I'm out of, hanging on my kitchen wall.
I wonder if others use Post-its (which has become a generic word like Kleenex or Coke) for their grocery list. When I was working as a journalist or school teacher, I could not have made my grocery list on little square Post-it because in those days, with two hungry sons at home, I made lo-o-o-o-ong grocery lists. I even made the week’s menus on one side and the necessary groceries on the other for a once-weekly trip to the store.

Now that I’m not punching a time clock and those sons are grown and gone, I typically swing by the grocery store several times a week, usually after leaving my gym. And now my list can easily fit on those little squares.  Anytime one walks in my kitchen she or he can find a little yellow Post-it slapped on my wall with items like almonds or milk scratched in tiny letters.

Then when it’s time to go to the store, I slap that Post-it on the inside of an outside pocket of my purse for easy retrieving at the market.

I had these Post-its made up to add little notes to readers when I send them books.
The patent on Post-its expired in 1997, and a gazillion companies are now making the product in every hue in the color spectrum and in shapes ranging from hearts to initials. Logos are printed on them for promotional purposes, or cute little designs can be found. Even after all these years, I still love them. In fact, I never met a Post-it I didn’t like. I’d love for you to share your favorite uses for Post-its.—Cheryl Bolen, whose latest release is Last Duke Standing, Book 3 in the Lords of Eton series of Regency-set historical novels.

31 comments:

  1. Cheryl, I've always had some attraction to those colored shaped ones. If they're in a store they draw me to them. I love going to business stores like Staples and finding them. Funny, they're useful and their bright shades give a little lift to my day. Thanks for the blog!

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  2. I spent the 80s-2000s working in hospital administration. We LIVED on Post-Its ... especially the "sign here" variety. LOL When I first moved into my condo, I stuck Post-Its to the wall with the name of the paint color I wanted so the painters wouldn't make a mistake. Hint: don't live them lying around when a toddler is present. Take your eyes off them long enough to make lunch and they've covered your floor in patchwork Post-Its.

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    1. We ought to do a book on used for Post-its, Nancy!

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  3. One of the first things I packed for this 2 months long winter break was a pad of sticky notes! Clearly, I can’t leave home without them. I’m writing while I’m away so that means I use them for notes in my daily planner (yes, I still use a paper version - see my January blog post about that!)

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  4. The tiny neon-colored ones! Those are my go-to's when editing and I'm in the "print and read" stage. Those little suckers are life-savers. Never thought I'd say that. hahaha

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    1. What is it about those tiny ones that makes them so vital, Kathryn?

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  5. I use the Sticky Notes on my computer--they're occasionally all over my screen. I don't know how anyone ever worked in an office without them, and I'm like Kathryn--like that neon!

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    1. Me too, Liz. And, boy, do I get made when they get unstuck off my computer after a few months!

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  6. I love love multi-colored neon Post-Its, but I feel bad about using them, they're so pretty! So I end up using the yellow "boring" ones for my To Do lists.


    My contact info: adissidente [at] gmail [dot] com

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    1. I'm the same, Iris. Can't waste the pretty colors on boring lists.

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  7. I love love love my Post it notes!! When I was teaching I had tons of them in different sizes and colors in my desk. I had the students use them to mark information in a book when they were doing research. Boy, did they LOVE using them.

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  8. Post its are invaluable after I print my shity first draft. I go through and stick them in every scene that needs work, whether it's a tweak or major surgery. I love the bright colors. I find the original dull yelow a bit dull. If I was more left-brained different colors would mean different things like pacing or sensuality, but that's not me. And yes, grocery lists stuck on my wallet for when I go to the store.

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  9. Cheryl
    I love buying stationary items. From the post it's to notebooks and pens. It's a good feeling opening a new notebook and to write on the fitst page.
    When I was working post its was a MUST have on my desk ALL the time! At home we have the ling ones on the fridge for the grocery list. Dont get me started on the little tabs and arrow post its. ;)
    crossnstitch2 at aol dot com

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  10. Cheryl, I love sticky notes! I have over ten different sizes and multiple colours and use them for everything from plot points to grocery lists to phone numbers to even reminders to call my mother-in-law every day at 4 pm. I use the larger lined ones for grocery lists and like you, stick it on my wallet so I don't misplace.

    I used to get down on myself because I had all these notes everywhere so I didn't misplace anything. Hubby said many historical heroes (such as President Lincoln and Robert E. Lee) were intense note-takers. So now, I go crazy. I mean if they did it, it can't be half-bad.

    Mrs. N ;)

    nnlight at nnlightsbookheaven dot com

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    1. They are great for reminders, N.N. Thanks for reminding me!

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  11. I use them all the time. Once used different colored ones on a large white board to move scenes around.

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    1. I do the same thing, Ruth. In fact, there are writers' workshops on this!

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  12. I love them! I use the longer lined ones for my list making! I don't know how we existed without them!

    MsRedK at aol dot com

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    1. Oh, I love the longer lined ones, Cindi. I use those for interjecting scenes in editing scenes in hardy copy.

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  13. I use Post-Its every day. I'm always writing notes to the family.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    1. And the beauty is you can stick those babies anywhere, can't you, Mary?

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  14. Hey, Cheryl, you know we share a love of office supplies. I use PostIts as bookmarks, as reminders stuck on my monitor for impulse changes in a story, and as a plotting tool. If I'm stuck in a chapter, I use different colors to represent exposition, action, heroine's and hero's viewpoints, etc. At a glance I can see if one element overwhelms another. I carry a PostIts memo binder in my purse just in case I need to stick a note somewhere.

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    1. What a great idea to use them for bookmarks. I'm totally going to try it. :)

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  15. I ADORE postits! I have every size and colour imaginable and like you, write out the daily groceries shop (my list lives attached to me cell phone). I also use them for the really important lists in my daily life and I couldn’t survive a workday without them and my daytime which is also covered in them. Unlike scratching items off a to-do list, ripping the note that has served its purpose to head to my shredding is so much more satisfying. I have a stockpile of of the little pads of sticky paper that seem to have innumerable uses. Thank you for bringing a smile at the end of a long day about something so mundane, yet impossible for me to live without! shelleyabailey at telus dot net

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