I’ve heard numerous recommendations for white boards, bulletin boards, note cards and sticky notes for plotting a novel. Systems where you can list your chapters and scenes and then move them around at will. They always sound fabulous until I get home and try to implement them.
That’s when I run up against two fatal flaws:
1. space constraints – I don’t have any place to mount the size board I’d need to deal with a novel in linear fashion (and I’m a very linear person)
2. these are pen and ink functions…and I detest writing by hand.
This week, as I’ve been contemplating the revisions my agent requested for Faery Unexpected, I found an answer to my dilemma. Virtual Post-it Notes. Seriously. I think I’m in love! I outlined the book, transferred the chapter titles and scene summaries onto color-coded virtual stickies that I arranged on a cyber-bulletin board. Now I can rearrange things as I rewrite, and I’ll know how to restructure the corresponding text when I’m all done. Too cool!! I’m on a 30-day free trial, but I’m pretty sure I’m hooked!
Warning: If you try this program, be aware–they’re very annoying at first. They pop-up everywhere and are just in the way. Sheesh! I thought I’d have to delete the program before I got started, but I stuck to it (haha…no pun intended) and tamed the little monsters. Once domesticated, they’re AWESOME!!
Okay. I’m now returning to my previously scheduled revisions.