Bestselling Author Delilah Devlin
HomeMeet Delilah
BookshelfBlogExtrasEditorial ServicesContactDelilah's Collections

Archive for April 2nd, 2010

Index Cards: A Time-Wise Writer's Tool
Friday, April 2nd, 2010

This is for you writers out there…

When you’re on the go, you don’t have to carry the latest in digital gadgetry to get ahead on your Work-in-Progress (WIP).

What you might try doing for those short windows of time throughout your busy day, whether sitting in the dentist’s office or waiting for a school bus, is carry a stack of index cards in your purse. I like the colored ones (color inspires me all by itself). I keep them at the bottom of my bag with a rubber band around them. When I have those small windows, I pull them out and jot down notes—maybe a smattering of dialogue, notes about setting that I need to layer into a scene, the outline of a scene, whatever pops into my mind—on the card. It doesn’t matter where you might currently be in your WIP. You can lay out the cards later next to your plotting grid/outline to figure out where these snippets will fill in the blanks.

If you have your scenes plotted already, you can carry your grid/outline wrapped around your index cards. Number the scenes on the grid/outline and put the reference number at the top of the index card so that you can plop what you’ve jotted down into your manuscript at the appropriate place the next time you’re sitting in front of your computer.

If you need reminders of what your characters look like, jot down their descriptions on a card to keep permanently in the stack.

If you need a reminder where your were the last time you opened your document, and need to work sequentially through your manuscript (some of us are linear thinkers!), print that last page of your story, fold it in half lengthwise, and wrap it around your stack of cards.

Index cards can be a handy, transportable writing tool that won’t break your piggybank!