Hi, my name is Dannie, and I’m addicted to office supplies.
Color-coded subject dividers, index cards, sharpies, post-it notes, three-ring binders, page slicks, push pins, and really fantastic pens which I will horde and protect to the point of maiming.
No for real. Don’ friggin steal my pens. I will cut you.
Beyond my slightly compulsive love for Staples, once I started plotting I discovered I needed a way to keep all my crap in order so I could quickly reference it while I draft. All this stuff about character motivation, story structure, brainstorming, and so on needed a home. A couple months ago I touched on some of this during the Writing Process Blog Hop.
You may have heard of this referred to as a story manual, book bible, etc. I call it ‘The Binder’ as in “Hubs, your cat just threw up on The Binder and now he needs to consider himself an endangered species.” For 30 days during NaNoWriMo, I carry The Binder pretty much everywhere I go like a security blanket knitted from binder clips, printer ink, and those little cheerios-looking sticker thingies you put around a punched hole when your paper rips.
Some people do this electronically. It’s a lot more tree-friendly and with apps like Evernote and Scrivener, there are easy ways to keep all your writer e-stuff in one place while also keeping it portable. I prefer something a bit more tactile, particularly while I’m brainstorming (I prefer brainstorming better by hand. No idea why.)
Either way, if you’re going to plot, you’ll probably want an easy way to find your notes as you’re writing. Thanks to The Binder, if I need to remember a certain type of vegetation present in a desert as opposed to a mountain, I just flip to the Settings tab (purple this year, if anyone’s curious.) And I don’t get distracted by the internet, Pinterest, etc when I’ve got my hard-copy binder to eliminate that temptation.
How do you organize your writing life?