I love being artsy and playing with different crafts. Rachel Stephen, my inspiration for NaNoWriMo this year, posted a video about how she creates and uses a bullet journal to meet her writing goals. It sounded like an interesting thing to try. So, one afternoon, I sat down at the kitchen table, pulled out the glue sticks, markers and some old magazines that I’d had lying in the bottom of my closet and made my own bullet journal.
I’m pretty proud of the result. If nothing else, it is pretty and makes me smile when I look at it. Okay, all joking aside, this journal does have some benefits. For one, the sky is the limit for what I put in it. I can track word counts, set goal and rewards, not to mention quotes and ideas.
One of the sections I created was solely for brainstorming ideas for my next novella in the Revenant City Series. The first novella, The Curse of Judas, is scheduled for release on Halloween 2018.
The Sons of Judas (tentatively titled) is a continuation of the series but written in the point of view of a different protagonist. I made lists of memorable character traits I wanted to include and researched about characterization in general. What I found is the Meyers-Briggs methodology. Meyers-Briggs breaks down personalities into 16 different categories. Each category has their own personality traits and tendencies that are important to consider when developing a character. Once I pinpointed which type of personality my character has, I shot over to 16personalities.com and copied/pasted their personality profile into my character’s portfolio.
***Notebook is my tool of choice for building character portfolios and possible locations for scenes.***
Anyway, back to brainstorming. I brainstorm best when I sit down with a piece of paper and map out my ideas. I write down everything I can think of. Scene ideas. Conflict and Effect. Possible outcomes. A lot of what I write doesn’t constitute to the final WIP, but I find that the act of writing gets the creative juices flowing. It may take 2 or 3 different brainstorming sessions before I finally decide on the direction I want to take, but that’s life. Why write something if you don’t find it interesting or if it isn’t your passion?
Keeping a bullet journal has helped me to keep all my ideas in one place. I typically would have a lot of paper to sort through, little notes I’d written, voice records on the phone, etc. Whenever I had an idea, I would record before I lost it. A lot of times, ideas pop in my head while I’m driving down the road. Stopping to write it down is not always an option.
The voice recorder app has definitely become a favored tool of mine. I use it more often than not when writing because my memory is just not that great! There is a lot going on in my life and hate it when I can’t remember that awesome thought I had this morning that I wanted to write down before I forgot. Too late!!!
I am really looking forward to the month of November. I can’t wait to start putting words on paper and building my first draft. My outline, although not yet complete, is in good shape. I hope to have it finished before November 1st!