At the moment I have seven notebooks on my desk – and many bits of paper with various things scribbled on them. Beside my bed I know I have at least three notebooks and on the table and fridge I have several more. Most of them are old and tattered with pages falling out because I’ve torn so many pages free. One of those pages is now floating loose across my desk and has quite a good outline for a new writing project on it.
I possibly should file these things but strangely enough things put in my filing cabinet tend to stay there and they never actually get acted upon. Bits of paper floating across my desk are far more likely to float to the surface and should they do that just when I’m ready for an idea… More importantly, I know when I’m looking for something it is on my desk and I will find it if I just turn over enough pages.
One of these notes that floated to the surface today has a couple of things written on it. On one side I have a list of names, some with meanings attached to them. Beside that, but written upside down, I have a list of rankings that I was thinking of using in a story. Turn the paper over and I have another list of names, most of which are crossed out and underneath that I have the very useful note: Arrives, Fights, Flash-back, End of Fight, Move on. Fantastically useful.
Actually it is a fairly important bit of paper and now that I have found it again I’m going stick it in my dictionary so I don’t lose it. The notes were written over a two day period as I was working on other things and I just pulled the paper out of my pocket and scribbled down the ideas as they came to mind. They all relate to one of my WIP’s that wasn’t really working the way I needed it to. I was mulling things over in my mind and random ideas kept popping out so I was just adding them wherever there was space on the paper.
Should I have all my notes for one project together? Probably but I’d rather spend my time writing the draft then filling the paperwork and if I desperately need one of my notes I know I will find it sooner or later. Besides, just by writing it down I tend to remember the most important parts.
Question to the writer’s out there: Do you organise your notes or do you let them float across the desk?
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