Don't do a NaNo without them

The arsenal for this year's NaNoWriMo.

  • Duffy Moon 7y

    I've got a brain-dump box, too. Most of what's in it is cryptic little fragments of sentences, just the shadow of an idea, that were meaningful to me when I put them in there, but sometime over the months (and years) have turned into complete gibberish.

    I second the idea of having a standard machine. I use my full-size Remington Standard all the time because it works so daggone well.
  • Elizabeth 7y

    Our setup is very similar! I too have a brain-dump box, with story sketches, and I use index cards for things like keeping track of minor character names, familial relationships, etc. I also carry a notebook for scraps of inspiration or to brainstorm ways to take care of plot holes and knots.

    I can't write with an outline. I've tried. It doesn't work. Most of the time, the story I come up with in the end barely resembles what I started out with, as if I played some epic game of "telephone" with myself, and I veer from the outline within the first chapter or so.

    What kind of pen is that? I can't quite make it out. My editing pen of choice is a beat to death black Parker 51 with a dented cap that I therefore got for cheap. Love that thing....
  • mpclemens 7y

    It's a suuuuuper cheap "Aldo Domani" pen I snagged from Office Depot for $5 when the local one closed. Actually, I bought two, one brown and one red. Your basic steel-nib, plastic-sectioned junk pen, but it lays down a smooth line, especially with Waterman ink, which is becoming my new favorite.

    Like typewriters, I don't want to pay so much for a pen that I'm scared to use it. I have heard nothing but good things about 51s, and will have to get a user-grade one someday.

    I could have used an outline in last year's nano (my first), though perhaps developing plot points on Halloween night in-between passing out candy to the kiddies had something to do with my lack of focus. The cards are a giant leap ahead of last year's stack. I'm thinking about making a giant mind-map for the story structure, so I can see where the gaps lie. Mind-mapping is less rigorous than a formal Roman-numerated outline, and encourages doodling, scribbling and spontaneity.
  • MySpotlessMind 7y

    Oh this is nice. The dump box with the index cards are a good idea. I should have probably done that, but instead mine are all in my trusty dusty notebook.
  • mpclemens 7y

    I like to make little piles of things and sort everything out. It's far more fun that actually writing.
  • greentea flute 6y

    thanks for this reference, I used to have a cardboard pyramid that I kept notes under, to improve 'em with pyramid power, erk, so, I have a fourteen hundred page novel here on the hard drive that needs about four hunert more pages 'til it's done, thanks god the six hundred pages of footnotes are finished ....
  • mpclemens 6y

    Egads. I've got a system in the works for organizing that mess of cards (or at least for new cards.) Stay tuned...
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