1. Leatherworth Featherfist
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    Leatherworth Featherfist Member

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    Remember What?: Secrets of The Every Day Writer

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Leatherworth Featherfist, May 7, 2011.

    Lately I've been thinking up a lot of really good ideas for characters and plots.
    The only problem is: I think them up when I'm out and about; whether I am driving, hiking, doing yard work, swimming, or out to lunch.

    I have a terrible memory, and I can't remember why.

    I sometimes take a notepad with me, and I guess it works just fine. Or, sometimes I'll just bring a pen with me and write my ideas on my arm.

    What do you guys do to help you remember good ideas while your out and about?

    Any successful secrets?

    I think a tape recorder would come in handy, that way you could whip it out of your pocket, record your idea, whip it back into your pocket, and come back to it later.

    I don't know. I'm sure everyone's got their own tricks, I'm just interested to hear them. Maybe I'll learn something new.
     
  2. Yoshiko
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    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't make notes while I'm out. If I don't remember by the time I return home then I assume the idea just wasn't good enough no matter how brilliant it might have seemed at the time.
     
  3. KP Williams
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    KP Williams Contributing Member

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    If I remember to bring my cell phone, I'll make note of my brilliant idea in a text message and save it as a draft. Then all I have to do is remember I did that. :p

    If I lack my phone for whatever reason, or if I'm in a rush, I'll grab the nearest pen or marker and make a note on my hand. Lacking that, basic repetition. I'll say the thing I need to remember twenty or thirty times, however long it takes to stick. But my short-term memory can be a little selective in what it wants to keep track of--if I haven't already written an idea down or worked it into the story, chances are I'll forget all about it. So I prefer not to use the repetition method. I'd sooner carve it into my flesh with a bent paper clip... Yeah, I've done that once. :rolleyes:
     
  4. Leatherworth Featherfist
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    Leatherworth Featherfist Member

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    lol... I'll have to try that some time. Though I have had someone else try to do that to me before. He got a swift punch to the stomach.
     
  5. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    The problem with being a guy is you can't (or won't) have a notebook and a pen in your handbag, like we do, ;) but a cellphone is a good solution and sometimes if I cant make notes at all I just keep thinking about the idea and developing it far enough in my thoughts that I won't be able to forget it easily. Or if Something comes to my mind from a song or somethign I hear or see I try to recreate that when home, maybe listening to that same song again or something or trying to remember what made me think of it, if I somehow have forgotten the exact idea. The other night before falling asleep I came up with a great idea and immediately wrote it in the notebook on the bedside table I keep for that purpose, and that was good because the next day that idea was gone.
     
  6. Youniquee
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    Youniquee (◡‿◡✿) Contributor

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    I just remember it until I get home..lol But now I write them down in a list so I can put them into upcoming chapters.
    Funny I can't remember what I learnt at school when I get home, yet I can remember story ideas. xD
     
  7. popsicledeath
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    popsicledeath Banned

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    I don't worry about it. If it's important and good, I'll remember it in some way, shape or form.
     
  8. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    If I think of something that strikes me as a really good idea, I usually obsess on it until I start writing it. Remembering it is not a problem.

    Remembering where I left my keys...now THAT'S a problem!
     
  9. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't normally carry a bag, but I have my phone on me most times so I've made notes there.

    Usually it can wait until I get home.
     
  10. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    That's why phones with qwerty keyboards and word are absolutely necessary to writers. I can write whole stories on it while out and about :)
     
  11. Earlychop
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    Earlychop Member

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    I have to have my laptop right next to my bed - charged and ready to go, otherwise I have the same problem as you. I have not had a full nights sleep in two months.
     
  12. MJLowson
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    MJLowson Member

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    Generally when I'm on the move I always have a note pad, around A5 for the project I'm working on - I should really focus on one at a time (Dyspraxic) and using this I scribble notes down for my story, and I might do some handwritten bits to transfer when I have my laptop or Desktop to hand
     
  13. Liza
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    Liza Active Member

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    I usually have no pen/cellphone/whatever on me when I get inspiration. Lucky me, right?
    So I repeat it in my head a thousand times until I get home, or try to. If I forget it, I try hard to remember and it usually comes back. Most of it, anyway.
    Like with poems, I think up amazing lines and only remember one. :/
     
  14. dizzyspell
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    dizzyspell Active Member

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    I carry my unfinished first draft with me wherever I go, no matter how impractical. I'm not obsessive, but it's the only copy I've got, and the last thing I want is for my house to burn with it inside. Four solid notebooks worth of story at the moment - meaning it's heavy!

    So if I have an idea I'll either scribble it on the front page of the notebook I'm currently working on, or if what I'm doing isn't too important, I'll just start writing then and there.
     
  15. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    OMG, I wish I could do that. I wrote a letter to my grandmother for her birthday, with a poem and stuff, and by the time I got done I thought my hand would never uncramp, lol. It's sad really. I should write longhand more often. On the bright side though when I go anywhere I have my back-up flash drive on my keychain with everything in it. So if my house burns down I still have it and I don't have to carry 4 notebooks.
     
  16. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    I guess I'm in the "Remember it in your head unless you forget it in which case it wasn't important" people. I come up with story ideas all the time that I never really develop and they vanish again, but developments to the plot I'm actually working on stick around because I obsess over them and write them in my head if I have no way to write them down, and that's usually good enough to keep me until I get home.
     
  17. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    Oh yeah... I'm one of those too. Meant to say that on my outburst about handwriting. Oops. Guess I forgot :p
     
  18. JimFlagg
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    JimFlagg Contributing Member

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    It's funny. I use to write them down but I find that they just come back to me when I am writing. So I stopped. Plus there are those times like when you are in a shower or a meeting or something that makes it impossible to write it down.

    One thing I had to do was only try to think of things for my current project and to stop thinking of things for other stories I would like to write. Try to keep those ideas out of your head until you actually start to work on that story or it will clutter your thoughts.
     
  19. Yoshiko
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    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

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    But phones with keyboards look so ugly. D:
    *has a cute & super girly phone~*

    I often have a notebook with me -- one with a Union Jack design that I bought while on holiday in London last summer -- which I'll sometimes work on outlines in but I don't use it for noting down any new ideas. I remember using my phone to make a note of an idea once but I accidentally deleted it when finished...
     
  20. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    LOL, I would be afraid to do that too, imagine if I forget / lose my bag somewhere!!! :eek: (that feels like a bigger risk than house burning up) But I understand what you mean, if my house DID catch fire I think My laptop (with all the stories inside) would be the one thing I would try to save,(or at least the uSB flash drive with them on), and it's not because of the computer, it's 5 years old so it's not for that... I already lost most of my belongings while abroad so I don't have much else left to resque than that. :)
     
  21. KillianRussell
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    KillianRussell Contributing Member

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    Exactly on the keys !

    I text message stuff to myself then as quickly as possible get the idea of of my mind and doceumented. I write as fast as I can disregarding everything but the creative element. I am not anal retentive, I do not have a non negotiable plan where I must fit a round peg idea in a square hole.
     
  22. eMotive-
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    eMotive- Member

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    I've got a notepad too, although I usually just try and remember it until I get home where I can jot it down in Microsoft Word or something.
     
  23. Patrick94
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    Patrick94 Active Member

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    So you wrote it by hand?
     
  24. Lord Malum
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    Lord Malum Senior Member

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    If an idea is potent enough, I'll just have to write it. If I get an idea that I think is good but not an urgent feeling about it, then I'll jot it down for later. I carry around a notebook big enough to fit in my back pocket and I'm never without a pen (a little habit I picked up from Army life interestingly). I could never keep up with all the ideas if I didn't do this.
     
  25. Mungo
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    Mungo New Member

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    I have a tiny composition notebook that fits into my back pocket along with my wallet. All I need to remember is to bring something to write with.
     

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