I want to share with you why an idea journal is vitally important for a writer. It has helped me push through writers block, solidify concepts in my mind and keep all my messy thoughts in one place. I know every writer says to note down your ideas, and being the silly person I am, I thought yes of course I am doing that already when I am writing my book. However, there are those moments in between my writing and everyday life where ideas strike me and I am at a loss to put it anywhere. What about that post-it-note that I put an idea on last week? It’s disappeared. What about the notes section of my Samsung? Oops, I just hard reset my phone and it is all gone. The notes on the Samsung are the only things that do not get automatically backed up onto your computer in the normal backing up process. Who would have thought it?
Here is a list of the many benefits I have found in having a journal:
- Organisation: Notebooks help by keeping all your ideas in one place, rather than scattered everywhere. You will always know where to find your ideas, unless you lose the notebook.
- It is a record of all your ideas: this means the good and bad ideas, as well as the ones you do not use. Say that you had a great idea for one book, but never used it and now you are writing a new story which would be perfect for it. Lucky for you, it is in your notebook!
- Benefits of handwriting notes: despite my big love of recording my ideas out loud (Click here for article) I generally forget them instantly once it has come out of my brain/mouth. If I write them down on a piece of paper, I find that I remember my ideas more clearly and can see it in my mind with my self-diagnosed photographic memory.
- Writing by hand lets the idea formulate properly in the mind: This is because the brain reacts faster than it takes to write the word with a pen, whereas by typing or saying out aloud your ideas, everything is happening so fast and can become word vomit.
- Obviously, I use it to write my ideas down that come up during the day. It is important to carry it around with you, so I suggest a soft covered notebook.
- Also when I go back and listen to my recordings, I write down what I have said. That way, I have it in front of me when I need it and do not have to go through hours’ worth of recordings to find the one idea I was looking for.
- I write the backstories of my characters in there as well as their innermost thoughts and desires. This is for me to know them better and it can also help you subliminally find connections in your plot.
- I draw a mini timeline in there for quick reference.
- I outline my scenes in my notebook before I type them, so that I can prevent writers block. I find my own blockages occur when I haven’t really thought about the scene or section I am writing about.
- I stick in pictures that inspire me about how my land and characters look like.
- Also, sometimes the best way to get over writers block is to change up the routine. Get off the computer and write out a chapter by hand. I cannot explain the feeling when your brain connects your ideas from the pen to the page.
Awesome places to buy Notebooks: