As a writing coach and a writing instructor, I always encourage writers to keep a small notebook in their pocket or purse at all times.
Then, whenever a good idea comes to mind, it’s easy to write down the idea.
But here’s the thing.
Many times, people jot down a few words that they think will help them remember their great idea.
And sometimes this works.
But many times, when people look back at their notebook to see their great ideas, many of those ideas don’t seem so great any more.
In fact, many times the writer has lost all enthusaism for turning one of his great ideas into a wonderful story, article, or even a book.
So why does this happen?
Well, usually it’s because the writer didn’t write down enough details when he jotted down the idea in his little notebook.
He didn’t capture what it was about this topic that initially excited him.
So when he later goes back to his notebook and sees something like, “Thanksgiving story” he doesn’t remember much, if anything, about what he planned to write about this topic or, more importantly, HOW he intended to write about this topic.
So how do you avoid losing your enthusiam for what you once thought was a great idea?
In your initial notes (in your little notebook) you capture the slant and the voice of HOW you are going to write about this topic.
That is, you include the very details that excite you to write about this topic right when you get these ideas.
You don’t wait for them to come back to mind later.
Instead of writing jotting down, “Thanksgiving story”, for example, and hoping you remember what you wanted to write about when you look at this note weeks, months, even years later, be more specific.
Write down something like, “When most people think of Thanksgiving they think of a Norman Rockwell type painting, with all the family gathered around the table as Dad is about to carve a huge, golden brown Turkey. But there are other, less traditional pictures of the perfect Thanksgiving.”
Next, you could jot down notes about the most memorable Thanksgiving you have experienced that didn’t involve a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, or at least not sitting down to a turkey dinner and all the trimmings in the way we all picture it.
Are you beginning to see what I mean here?
If you have enough information and detail in your initial notes, then it should be much easier to write the article or story later.
Plus, you will still have the enthusiasm and excited you had intially when you came up with the idea.
So get out your notebook today and be sure you include enough details each time you get another great idea.
All the best,
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