Take Note

Among the many wonderful things I inherited from my father is something that I don't admit to many people. It's a bit embarrassing but I know I'm not alone in doing this. I talk to myself. If you were a fly on the wall in my home, on frequent occasions you would catch me throwing my hands up while I pace around and talk over some problem with me, myself and I. I don't do this in public or even when my family are around. I have to be alone because it still strikes me as a tad odd to be doing this but, you see, it works. It allows me to brainstorm, albeit with only my own brain, all the challenges I come up against in my writing. Would that character really say that? Would blackmail be sufficient motivation for violence? How tall should a housemaid robot be? It all gets thrown into the mix, tossed around and dumped on a plate of conclusion (mostly).

The only downside to my lone rantings is that I sometimes enjoy the conversation so much that I forget bits of it. For example, I've recently been  throwing around the elements of the end of my novel which presents the final confrontation. It's an exciting, fast-paced series of events that I've rolled out in my imagination like scenes in a film. 

Enter protagonist who is immediately accosted by antagonist and his helpers.

Switch to protagonist's friends who are finding another way into the building.

Switch back to the captured protagonist who...

It goes on and on and when I initially began to run this film through my mind, I forgot a couple of details. I was forced to retrace my thought process back but then I lost some of the later details and had to go forward through the train of thought. I should know better because I've already learnt the lesson that it's fine to get carried away in this brainstorming of ideas, after all it's that enthusiastic wandering that makes my writing so organic, but that I must also make notes, be they scribbled on a pad, typed on the computer or added to the note function on my mobile phone.

Always carry some way of recording your thoughts, even if it's only a pen and a screwed-up receipt. Make sure that when the muse bashes you on the head with the speaking stick, you can record the resulting inspiration. If you only have space for one word or a phrase, that's fine. Just ensure that you make a note.

I have some work mapped out on my novel to get back to. I have three men in a dark apartment and a robot. At the moment, I'm throwing around the ideas of where they find the robot and how it reacts. Is it violent? Is it on charge? I haven't figured that one out yet but before I get too carried away, I need to find a pen. 


  1. Always carry a notebook!

    I also have this running in the background when I'm online, in case I suddenly have a moment of storytelling genius. The free version's more than good enough -- http://edrawsoft.com

  2. I make notes on an app in my Iphone.

    Hugs and chocolate,


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