Sunday, April 28, 2013

How Do You Write?

Have started writing a new story. These early stages involve plot points here and a burst of prose there. Some small character detail I think of on the way to work. Inspiration from an overheard conversation...

So, how do you write / take notes? I have come to prefer sketchpads to notebooks. I like the space on the page without lines. Sometimes I'll scribble a vertical note. Sometimes I'll draw a character though my skill in this area is lacking. I also like an elastic band around the notebook cause I can add other papers more securely. Other papers usually being a group of poems I'm working on.

And I like the binder type that binds down the left hand side, so I can fold the pages back neatly, while balancing the notepad on my knee - am usually writing during my commute, so do the circumstances dictate the utensil?

Size wise I need something that will fit in my handbag, so smaller than A4 but space enough for a paragraph of writing with notes jotted around it.

Writing utensil wise, I use a refill pencil. I find pencil softer and easier to write with than pen and the refill types mean you never have to worry about sharpening. Also, you can write upside down.

I'm curious to know if other people have their preferences and idiosyncrasies? Or have I just exposed my madness?...

20 comments:

  1. I favour scraps of A5, jotted on as I think of an idea, carried around, occasionally becoming mysterious (What does that mean?) or lost. I once had to go through a whole bag of rubbish I'd put on the pavement to retrieve a vital bit of dialogue that got dumped by mistake.

    Works for me (she lied).

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    1. Whatever supports the creative process. Sounds like your thoughts have a life of their own!

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  2. Aren't writers odd, the way we acquire preferences for writing utensils and notebooks? I get excited by a basic, new spiral notebook like the kind they sell for students going back to school. I load up on them every fall. But I prefer to write with a gel ink pen. I love the way it glides over the paper. And I do usually sketch out my ideas in notebooks first before moving to the computer. For some reason I tend to brainstorm better if I handwrite it first. :)

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    1. Ah yes, I remember the back to school feeling, everything new and I would write neatly for at least the first page!
      I also enjoy using a notebook first before doing anything on my computer. I think the notebook feels less formal.
      Thanks for your comment.

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  3. I have a little Moleskine notebook that I like to write notes in, but I refuse to write in it with anything but my disposable fountain pen--I like the little scratchy noise it makes. But I also seem to get a lot of ideas when I'm trying to fall asleep so I usually type those into my phone under the covers.

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    1. Hi Sarah, love the thought of the nib scratching on the page. I also use my phone at night and if I'm really tired, the voice recorder - though sometimes I've listened to it the next day and can't make anything out.
      Thanks for your comment.

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  4. I also like sketchpads! But because notebooks tend to be cheaper, I usually write in notebooks. Like you, I find sketchpads very useful if I don't want to write in a straight line.

    www.modernworld4.blogspot.com

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  5. I like using refillable pencils but I am always snapping the lead because I am a 'hard' writer. I prefer notebooks with lines - I just can't write on a blank page!

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    1. Thanks for your comment, Jessica. It's nice to hear from the lined-notebook community.

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  6. My sister recently gave me a large notebook with removable dividers, which has made writing all the different sections of my current project so easy. I love my lines too. When I was about 5 I wasn't allowed a lined school book until I could write in straight lines on blank paper... so lined paper feels very grown-up :-D

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    1. I can imagine that dividers would be a great help. I sometimes title a page so flicking though, I'll see quickly what it's about. Thanks for your comment.

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  7. Ahh! I would love to write with Pen n Paper, I do use my Lappy for the past three years for writing. I maintain all the characters name and intro on an excel sheet. this helps me to further sketching of the characters while writing.

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    1. Thanks for your comment :) I think digital would be much handier for finding things. Good idea about the spreadsheet. Have heard of people doing that before.

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  8. I see your point, I prefer writing in my garden, under the shade, a pencil in hand and a large cup of ice capuccino :).

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    1. Ah lovely. What is it with writers and caffeine? :)

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  9. Lovely post, thanks for stopping by my blog! New follower via GFC!

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    1. I used to use notepads, but then I decided it was taking me too long to transfer everything onto the computer. So I taught myself to first draft on screen.

      I miss them!

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    2. Thanks for your comment, Deborah. What we need is an electronic notebook that we can scribble on with a natural feel and then have it all transcribed in perfect print to our laptops. It'll happen some day...

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