In most of my life, I’m a planner. I have lists for many of the things I do. I start packing lists weeks in advance. And I have 3 calendars…one on my phone for a quick look, a wall calendar so I can see it all at once, and a date book (that I can’t live without) so that I have room for those lists.
Recently I’ve noticed my writing is starting to move to the dark side; that the two are merging. I’ve started using timelines. I ripped out an entire month from an old calendar (a BIG calendar), and I blanked out the info in each of the squares. I get out my pack of post-its and I put my story points on each little yellow square and then I stick them to the blank squares of the calendar based on the relative day that event would occur. Does it make sense that A comes before B? Nope, move it to the next week.
I’m also a fan of colour coding my calendar. When the girls were young, pink versus blue made it easy to quickly look at the calendar and see if they were with us that weekend, or with “the others” (ie. Our respective exes.) With my writing calendar, I write my heroine POVs in red and my hero POVs in blue. Again, a visual slap-in-the-face that pretty much screams to me any imbalance.
I’m currently working a third story using this method. It shows me, literally, where more story is needed, and spots where I can spread the story out a little more. So far, I’m liking this method.
How do you stay organized in your writing or your life?