I discovered that a writer’s journal or writer’s notebook was an actual thing probably about a year ago. At first, it seemed like a daunting task because I immediately related it to a bullet journal where you have to be incredibly organized, efficient, and creative to keep up.
Normally, I would say I’m all of those things, but when it comes to writing I’m a damn mess.
Despite initial worries, I went and bought a cute notebook at Target, because I am always up to buy a cute notebook at Target, and the journal began.
And it’s a damn mess.
BUT, it’s also the most organized I’ve ever been with my writing. With a million never-ending ideas running through my head, getting a specific journal for them all was one of the best decisions I’ve made. If you are a messy writer that uses notebooks, your photo, scraps of paper, other notebooks, your planner, etc. to write out story ideas, I would 100% recommend buying a big ol’ notebook and consolidating (for the most part—I still don’t write every little idea in there).
Some of the things I put in my journal are:
These lists can range from why you write, to conflict ideas, to character traits, or to things that inspire you to write. The purpose is to give you endless inspiration for when you’re feeling wiped. The more lists, the more you have to look back on.
This is where I make a mess. Sometimes more than just a simple idea comes and I have to write it all out. This is an example of what one of my short stories (Where It All Went Wrong) started out as. It’s all over the place, but it’s there and I won’t forget it.
I try to leave a page for each idea and sometimes that’s not enough space or too much, but it’s a little way I can try and stay organized. Mostly I try to put down the general idea of the story with any specifics I have at the time. I’m notorious for just starting a story with no plan, so this helps give a little direction.
There are many more ways to fill a writer’s notebook, but these are my main three! If you have your own journal, what are you favorite ways to fill up the pages?