Last week we talked about a couple of ways in which you can capture your ideas as quickly as your highly developed imaginative minds can churn them out. Now we are going to talk about different methods of corralling those unruly puppies in your home office. Each of these systems will help you track both general writing ideas and specific works in progress.
1. The Notebook System
This system is perhaps the simplest way of keeping track of your ideas. All you need for this system are stacks of notebooks, a marker pen and empty space on your bookshelf. This was my system years ago before I got my first computer.
All I did was label each notebook with the aspect of writing that it concentrated on. For example, one notebook could be labeled “Characters”, another “Plots” and so on and so forth. Then it became a matter of transferring the notes from their temporary home in my pocket to their permanent home in the office.
One disadvantage of this system is that when I wanted to find something I had to flip through pages and pages of written text which, inevitably, took forever because I would get distracted from what I was looking for by thoughts of all that I could with the other ideas I was flipping past. Therefore if you have a computer, as I and most people do, I recommend the electronic version of this system.
As a writer I often find inspiration in the most unlikely places and, more specifically, at the most inconvenient times. I love my muse but sometimes she can be a flake. She will spark my creativity when I’m standing in line at the supermarket, or at work trying not to go insane or driving in my car swerving to avoid little old ladies that appear out of no where. (Where’d you learn how to drive grandma? Sears?)
Hardly ever am I inspired in a place where I can actually sit down and explore the ideas that come to mind. So today we are going to talk about different methods of capturing lightening in a bottle while the storm is raging or, in layman’s terms, recording those ideas the moment the light bulb goes off.
There are many areas of a character’s life that you can exploit to torment them and I think that perhaps the most favorite of them (mine at least) is their place of employment. But there are jobs and then there are JOBS. Below is a list of unusual jobs that your character could have the (mis)fortune of being paid to do. One or two you may have to work at building a story around but most of these just invite a rich and humorous exploration.
So I’ve been trying to get a handle on all of this SEO business and making sure that my website is pretty enough (read optimized) to attract the major search engine robots. So far, only Google is showing me any sort of traffic love and I’m beginning to feel like even that is nothing more than a mercy flirt.
I finally got around to visiting all of the links I’ve saved in my bookmarks folder. I swear the list is a mile long. Really. Anyway, amongst the links to guaranteed time wasters (online video games), new design resources and tutorials, is this gem from the Positivity blog. Why Some People Almost Always are Successful is a must read for anyone attempting to pursue their dreams. I will certainly be adding this to the notable articles list in the sidebar.
Go read the article. Now!