I love notebooks – bound, spiral, 3-hole binders, and comp books. Especially really wild, colorful ones from the dollar store. Here are the top ten things I use my blank notebooks for. Maybe it’s time you join me in this addiction:
- Write down ideas for stories, blog posts, and titles – notebooks are great repositories for things that you don’t have time to write. It’s like saving for a rainy day.
- Write down questions you want to research – when you hit a spot in your story where you are missing some info or need to spend more time thinking about what a character will do or say, put a placeholder there, and write down your questions in your book. I like to do a lot of written processing on character issues, but I don’t want that mixed in with my manuscript. The comp book is a perfect place for it.
- Write down interesting words.
- Write down conversations you overhear – listening to real people will help you write natural sounding dialogue.
- Write down character sketches of people you meet or observe.
- Write down random thoughts as they occur – to do items, grocery list items, things you’re afraid you’ll forget if you don’t – dump it out of your brain and on to the page.
- Respond to writing prompts – and if you love writing prompts, check my other blog, The Writing Reader
- Write small stones.
- Sketch (world building) or doodle.
- Write down random facts/trivia that you learn that might be a story seed.
Did I miss a great use for a blank notebook? Leave it in the comments.