tech tips for writers

Tech Tips for Writers #175: Windows has a clipboard stream!

tech tips for writersTech Tips for Writers is an occasional post on overcoming Tech Dread. I’ll cover issues that friends, both real-time and virtual, have shared. Feel free to post a comment about a question you have. I’ll cover it in a future tip.

I can’t believe it took me so long to find this particular gem: Windows has a native clipboard (I see some of you rolling your eyes, like of course you know this. Bear with me). MS Office has one that tracks multiple clips, but the one in Windows–I thought–tracked only one. Not true. It tracks as many as MS Office.

Why is this so exciting to me? As I read blogs or articles, I like to copy the parts that I am inspired to comment on, or copy a quote that requires attribution. I created tedious workarounds, but they are … tedious… This Windows clipboard holds twenty-ish bits. Look at the scrollbar in this image (where the orange arrow points).

That’s a big list.

Here’s how you access it:

  • Click the Windows Key and then the letter V to open the clipboard.
  • If you don’t have it activated, the shortkey will ask you to activate it.
  • Click the clip you want to insert. It will appear where your cursor is blinking.
  • If you have a clip you’d like to save–a template for a query letter or your signature line for blogs (like mine below)–there are three dots on the right side of the clip. Click those and you’ll find the option to ‘pin’.

One handy characteristic: These are saved across all of your Windows devices.

Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular prehistoric fiction saga, Man vs. Nature which explores seminal events in man’s evolution one trilogy at a time. She is also the author of the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers and Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. Her non-fiction includes over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, reviews as an Amazon Vine Voice, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Natural Selection, Spring 2022.


76 thoughts on “Tech Tips for Writers #175: Windows has a clipboard stream!

  1. Pingback: Favorite Tech Tips for Writers |

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  3. Pingback: Writer’s Tech Tip #176–Find the most recent blog article |

    • I actually like the more complex approach of Windows. The learning curve is steeper (though haven’t we all learned about flattening curves), but once you get there, lots more is available–I think.


  4. I don’t even use the clip board, so this is all new info to me. An informative article, Jacqui. Do you know anything about USB ports? Mine has stopped working, and even though I’ve tried three different flash drives, none work. I’ve checked the inside of the port for damage and dirt, but nothing. My virus protection is good and did not detect anything, and none of the suggestions I’ve researched have helped. Sorry, I know it’s a lot of words right there, but I’m a bit of a techno dummy when it comes to computers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It used to work? And the flash drives you tried do work in other USB ports? I have one USB port that requires a certain type of USB and won’t work on any others (story for another day). First step: reboot the computer. That works for about half my problems, oddly enough. Second: You may need to update drivers. This isn’t difficult, can be done through ‘device manager’. If it’s not one of these, it gets more complicated. If you lived closed, I’d send my tech guru over to help! He solves everything for me.

      Let me know how it goes.


  5. Something new every day…or we stumble upon it after it’s been around a while.

    I’m a Mac user these days, and I blame that on Vista. I sometimes regret switching from PC to Mac, but at the time, I had no choice. I needed a new computer and the only ones I could find were loaded with that dreadful OS.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jacqui, a great tip for us all … and I’m glad to see that someone brought up Mac as I couldn’t find one on Safari. I’ve also used various workarounds, some of which seem to disappear so this is a good solution!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Great tip, Jacqui! If you want an advanced Clipboard manager to work on your Mac, you’ll have to look at third-party apps. These apps not only allow you to use multiple clipboards, but track and manage content history.

    I’m using “Flycut.” It’s free in the Apple App Store and I can scroll through the copied text and adjust the number of saved items.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: Tech Tips for Writers #175: Windows has a clipboard stream! — – uwerolandgross

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