You’re watching a really good show. A show you said you would watch till noon and then finally start writing. A show you watched till evening because you decided that you had nothing important you really needed to do that day.
Only to find, the next day, that you had – in fact – forgotten to do ten important things you had shelved in the back of your mind the day before.
Now, let’s talk about bullet journals. Bullet journaling is the most creative method of organisation that has been invented since the notebook. It allows you to track goals and habits, keep track of future appointments as well as log day-to-day tasks in a deceptively simple method that allows so much flexibility for customisation.
I was drawn to the system because of the freedom in planning day to day tasks without being spatially limited like in a conventional planner and also to decorate each month’s entries however I liked.
But for the longest time (actually just four months), I had no idea how to use my bullet journal to help in my writing (because I wasn’t writing).
I started out simple, segmenting a page to write out my blog post ideas. A spread of writing tips. A page of quotes from my latest favourite anime (No Game No Life). I am no expert in bullet journaling for writers but the beauty of this system allows you to adapt inspiration from how others use their bullet journals, so I hope these few ideas will also inspire you.
Monthly Writing Prompts
Some people create workout calendars and others dedicate a page for their #planwithmechallenge prompts, as a writer, you can do the same for your writing practice prompts. I chose to do mine in the monthly log format with stickers that match the theme for the month but the layout is entirely up to you. I plan on colouring in each row after I complete each prompt because who doesn’t love to cross tasks off a page.
Feel free to use the prompts in my spread for your own!
To Go or Not To Go
That is the question. This decision making spread came about because I was agonising to the point of insanity about whether I should go for an event. You can do this for any important, recurring (and annoying) decisions that you have to make quickly such as ‘What To Eat for Lunch‘ or ‘Should I Buy This Book‘. These are all seemingly trivial decisions that can somehow impact you later on in undesirable ways.
For instance, I made the last-minute decision to go out with some friends for a whole evening and it upset my whole week’s study schedule for no important reason at all. Deciding what you eat may affect how much time you have to travel to get to your selected restaurant and buying a book on impulse may give you budget headaches for a month.
Since this is my first time using a decision making spread, I am not sure if the factors I use are good enough to make an efficient decision but it is a learning process when it comes to the bullet journal and I can make a new one when I think of a better solution.
I can’t show pictures for this one because I’m still working on this story project but the general idea is to have a rough sketch of your character with all their stats like name, age, occupation, species (if any), background and even a quote from them. To me, nothing is more exciting than seeing your character ‘in real life’. Thinking about parts of your character that may not be important in the story is still useful in order to create carefully rounded characters and makes seemingly similar characters stand out from one another.
You can even customise each character page to suit the character’s style. I will definitely do a post about this when I’m done with my story!
Did you know that you should not give water to someone with a profusely bleeding wound, not matter how much they beg you? Me neither. Interesting facts always pop up when you least expect them to and when you finally want to use them in a story, you can’t really remember what they are – or they are lost in the millions of random memo notes in your phone.
I have always wanted to create my own Encyclopaedia of Random Facts but I never have enough ‘facts’ to fill up ten pages of a book (mostly due to laziness). However, having a page or two dedicated to interesting facts you have found or on research that you did concerning a particular topic relevant to your book can be useful for those occasions you want to do a bit of writing without opening up 10 billion tabs on food from the 12th century.
You get a 21st century chocolate chip cookie if you noticed this spread is not in my bullet journal. For a while, I tried out the traveller’s notebook but I bought mine one size too small so I have moved back to a normal bullet journal where I have more space to write and draw straight lines. However, as soon as my normal sized traveller’s notebook arrives, I shall go back to writing my research notes in there because I like how it looks.
And that, friends, is how I use my bullet journal as the right-brain to supplement my writing. Do you keep a bullet journal? How do you use it to help your writing?