It strikes me that there are many organisational challenges for writers, from organising our lives to find time to right through to organising ideas.
Recently I’ve been chatting with a writer friend about how to organise all the ‘snippets’ of ideas we have written down in physical and electronic notebooks. Over years of writing these tend to become vast collections if you’re an author who gets lots of ideas. But how do you utilise them? This is an interesting question.
And of course for novelists – even for a ‘pantser’ like me – there are points in a novel where you need to map stuff out because novels get too big to fit in your head (about the 40K mark for me). For the non-pantser writers there are of course index cards, sticky notes, exercise books, white boards, cork boards, the study floor, and any number of pieces of software. Still I’ve only come across a few writers that feel their system of organising and planning works 100% how they’d like.
Even the short story writer needs something to track where all their winged-ideas have been sent, and which ones have flitted sadly home.
Of course there’s no one-size-fits-all solution because we all have our own ways of thinking and working, but it often amazes me how much time writers put into this aspect of the work. It almost seems at odds with the creative process to be so organised!