A Notepad is Essential

My stories carry me away to another place and time. When I write, reality fades and my fictional world takes over. I immerse myself in that world and I know what the characters are thinking and doing.

When I’m not writing, I think about the story. What will the MC (main character) do next? What action is needed? What drama is needed? What else should I have the MC do, think, see? I mull over the story when I’m going to sleep, and I ponder what I’ll write when I wake up.


While in the midst of creating a story, I carry a notepad with me. Ideas frequently come unbidden. Typing or speaking ideas into a phone or iPad works, too, but I prefer paper. I use abbreviations and my own form of shorthand. When I get back to my writing, it’s easier to look at the notes than listen to something I’ve recorded or pull the file up electronically.

I can doodle additions on the notes, cross things out, or save the paper for a future story. Not only do I get ideas for my WIP, I also find inspiration for new stories.

I’ve mentioned that I write longhand on unlined sketch pads. I use a certain rollerball pen. One additional necessary tool for me is a small notepad like I’ve outlined here. These elements nurture my creativity.

When ideas strike, how do you record them?

Photo by Steve Johnson on Unsplash



4 Responses to A Notepad is Essential

  1. Jina Bazzar says:

    I can’t force myself to contemplate the next move of my mc. But ideas usually come while I’m doing chores or working out, and if I don’t pause what I’m doing and write it down, chances are I won’t remember them later. I used to have sidenotes everywhere. On grocery lists, school work, sometimes even on cardboxes so I wouldn’t forget my train of thought. Sometimes a word or two would be enough to jog my memory, but if enough time passed, I’d stare at those cryptic words and wonder, ‘what was i thinking?’
    Nowadays, I write the notes either on the bottom of the draft I’m working on, or on a separate file, depending what I’ll be using it for later. My document has so many files, I have folders inside folders….


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