The irony of this post title is not lost on me. I am smiling wryly as I provide you ways of staying on track while I clearly have not been staying on track myself. I haven’t posted here in over a month, a fact which, though sad, was quite necessary. There has been a lot going on these past few weeks and I needed to focus in on my non-writer life for a while. The good news? I’m back!
There is something you should know about me: I am obsessed with organizing. I love it. It makes my heart beat faster with excitement. It makes me weak at the knees. It really gets me going. I have so many files saved to my computer it runs slower when I turn it on. My Pinterest boards are full of printables and fill-able spreadsheets for everything from kitchen cabinet to van storage to filing cabinets. I love to know where everything is and how to make it easier to find.
I’m the same way when it comes to writing. I have outline sheets, character arcs, plot point generators, you name it. In fact, sometimes I get so caught up organizing, I forget that I’m actually supposed to be writing. Maybe you’re like me and you love to have your ducks in a row, or maybe you are nothing like me and you think I’m totally crazy. Either way, I wanted to share some of my most favorite planning/plotting/organizing sheets with you. Get that printer ready!
Starting broad is always best so right off the bat you should check out Annie Neugebauer. She has a ton of helpful sheets you can save right to your computer and she even includes several with prompts, in case you are really stuck. I can easily get lost on her site. Another great site for forms is Jami Gold’s Worksheets for Writers. I really love her Good Scene Checklists and she has forms specifically for romance and paranormal writers. Not my strong suit in any way but I always love to find stuff that is so specific!
A lot of what I have is to help with novel plotting as that is my weakness (planning in general). I love this snowflake outline and I’ve found the process of sitting down and boiling everything into a “jacket blurb” super helpful. I have found this example of chapter planning super helpful for plotting out scene and timing in a novel. Also, I use this scene writing “cheat” all the time with great results!
For those of you who try to hit a certain number of words per session/day/what-have-you, I love this word counter. There are a million out there, some even show you pictures of cats every 100 words, but I like the simple, straightforward stuff myself.
Stuck on a name? My friend Rachel G. sent me this amazing chart that shows which names are most prevalent in specific jobs. Super cool! A few other handy name generators I use are the last name generator, the name generator, and the Social Security’s Top Names database.
So, there you go. A handful of the forms I love to use when plotting, planning, writing, and re-writing my stories. Are there any I’ve forgotten? I’d love to see what you like to use when creating your stuff!