Planning a new novel

I’m rather pleased with my latest planning tool. I tried the whole “post it notes on noticeboard” planning technique, but the post it notes kept falling off and then I didn’t know what should happen next because all my scenes were scattered on the floor. I tried writing in little notebooks, but you can’t move the events if you change your mind about what order they should happen in. That occurs quite a lot when I plan something.

My little book of cards.

Then my daughter came home from school with a bunch of tiny revision cards held together on a book ring, and I knew I had found my perfect planning tool. I couldn’t find one in the local WH Smith’s, and my daughter actually wanted to use hers for revising, so I made one of my own. This had the additional benefit of having pages made out of fancy paper as well as plain paper which pleased me immensely.

Plotting

I can then take the book apart and write a plot point on each card (please note, this is not actually my next novel!) Then I spread them out in order all over the table, so I can see at a glance how the plot is going to work.

After that, I clip them back into the book ring, so I can work from a small notebook when I can’t spread all the cards out all over the desk. It even fits into my handbag, unlike my big planning notebooks. Oh, and I put my name on it in sparkly pink stickers (not my usual choice, admittedly …)

But the good thing is that the order isn’t set in stone, and so if I change my mind, or want to add another incident to the plot (or remove one) or simply change the order, then I unclip all the cards, re-organise the plot and put them back together again.

Re-organised cards.

I’m thinking of taking commissions, if anyone’s planning a novel?

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