when you stumble upon an interesting sound and you record it, Do you edit it right away keeping only what you think you'll need? Or, do you keep the raw files and use them when you'll need them?
it all goes into my library; the original recordings, edited versions, processed versions or whatever... It is so easy to manage and find media via SoundMiner, drive space is so cheap, better to keep it all because you just never know.... a new context might arise....
We did a whole tonebenders episode on this topic with Paul Virostek.
I personally edit what I need, backup the originals and then never think of them again. Dustin keeps all of it and I have no idea how he goes back through the source recordings.
I find soundminer to be a huge asset for this kind of thing, because it lets me tag the files as I see fit and then I can import only portions of the files into my sessions if I don't need the whole thing, or if I have a series of sounds edited into a single file.
I have a "to edit" folder on my hd where i copy all raw files if i don´t have the time to edit them right away, which is the common situation. When i find the time, i edit the single sounds, clean them up with RX, change gain(if needed) and write metadata into them (twisted wave). After that i rename them and save them into the dedicated folders and import them in Audiofinder. If i´m happy with the results i delete the raw files. I backup my whole soundlibrary every day. In the beginning i always kept the raw files but as i noticed, that i never got back, i delete them all.
My workflow bears some resemblance to @Andreas. I maintain a repository of raw recordings, sorted by folders appropriately. But once I master them (one big part of my mastering is that I often don't do much to them - mostly just corrective EQ notching, gain staging, M/S width). But once I'm happy with what I've got, I blow out the raw. I know that personally, I'm never going to touch the raw again anyway. Especially so because much of it is MS anyway so the raw files would be a pain to work with in editorial.
To each their own though. Raw files are of little use to me once I have the recording dialed in the way I like it to sound. Helps with the learning process of making a commitment to a creative choice and sticking with it, through better or (sometimes with much later hindsight), worse. But even those can be great learning experiences too.