Writing fiction, especially if you’re writing more than one short story, or novel, gets complicated. You’ve got notes, outlines, character and plot ideas everywhere, both on paper, and in various digital storage places. When I asked my romance writing class for their biggest challenge they responded: organization.
I’ve been writing in Scrivener for years, and it’s an amazing tool, but I’ve found two easy and free tools especially useful for fiction. Pinterest for inspiration, and Trello to keep my scenes straight. Pinterest has wonderful “secret” boards, which I use to collect characters, plot ideas, and settings. Trello is especially useful because I work on several projects at a time.
Get Inspired With Pinterest
I start my fiction with images. As I said:
… an image has built-in emotion – if you choose the right image. Fiction is all about emotion. No emotion? You’ve got nothing. Your idea, no matter how wonderful, will fizzle out. Or you’ll have a bunch of weird emotions tumbling around, which you can’t get a handle on… and the novel or short story fizzles out.
Whenever I find an image which arouses an emotion in me, I save it to one of my secret Pinterest boards. I have boards for each projects, as well as general boards for character traits, clothes and settings.
Try creating your own boards. You’ll find that once your boards are populated with pins, they kickstart your inspiration. Not only will you develop great characters, you’ll also come up with wonderful plot twists.
I like to browse a novel or short story’s board before I start writing each day.
The Charm of Trello: From Chaos to Organization.
Like Pinterest, Trello is perfect for visual thinkers. Yes, Scrivener has its cork board mode, which is very useful, and do use it to organize scenes. But for some reason, I find Trello more relaxing. I use it for planning scenes, plot points, and character arcs. I also keep track of my word counts.
If you use Evernote, as I do, to manage clients, blogging, and everything to do with your daily life, you’ll love Trello. You can copy a note link in Evernote, and attach the link to a Trello card. This is useful to keep track of research, and ideas for current or future projects.
If you’re writing fiction, and working on several projects at a time, try using Pinterest and Trello to not only get inspired, but also to keep everything straight. I’ve found that these two tools make me more productive.
You can find Angela on Pinterest, too.
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