Writing Gadgets

I love to organize stuff. My husband thinks I’m nuts because right now I am in heaven. We just moved into a new furnished apartment and the person who owns it is the sort who has to own every single kitchen gadget and utensil there is. Honestly, I look inside her (now my) kitchen drawers and cabinets, and I am just astounded at the amount of stuff there is. I don’t even know what some of these utensils are! And small kitchen appliances? She’s got everything you can imagine from stick blenders (two, actually, along with every sort of attachment available) to a meat grinder, to an ice cream maker. There’s even a machine to make cotton candy!

Waiting for me, after I finish writing this post, is this kitchen full of stuff that needs to be organized. I need to move all the things I’m going to use to someplace where I can find it easily and the stuff I’m never going to use (hello, deep fryer) to some obscure location in another closet, out of my way. But having all this fun organizing to do makes me also long to have a book to organize.

Happily, I’m going to be starting to write my next book as soon as I’m finished with the kitchen. 😊

But just as the kitchen needs organizing because I have every tool available, so too will my book. I don’t have every tool available to authors, but I’m realizing that I might just be like my landlady when it comes to accumulating too many utensils, only mine are for writing, naturally.

I’ve got Microsoft Word, in which I actually do my writing. I have Scrivener to organize my book, and Scrapple (by the same company) if I want to mind-map it. I’ve got Plottr to list out my scenes on a lovely timeline (I don’t have Aeon Timeline, but I’ve fooled with it and it’s loads of fun!). I’ve used Fictionary.co as well and really liked it. There are many more programs, which I talked about in some detail here.

For non-electronic-based systems, I use index cards, sticky notes on a bulletin board (and the wall), and just a plain, old W graph printed out on a piece of paper.

I have so many options, so many tools, so many possible ways to organize the same information.

And just to be clear, the information I organize includes a list of my characters, their eye and hair color, general body build, their internal and external GMC, and how they grow and change over the course of the book. I list places and general descriptions of settings that are used many times in the book. And, of course, I have an outline of my book (anywhere from a scene-by-scene detail to just knowing what’s going to happen at the major turning points). If things get confusing as they did with my last trilogy, I’ll create a calendar or timeline of the events in overlapping books (although, I am loathe to go through that again!).

That’s a lot of information to keep straight! And there are so many luscious ways to do so!

So, does anyone know what the gadget pictured above does and what it’s for? It looks rather disturbing to me–you could really hurt someone (or something) with those spikes!


Meredith Bond is an award-winning author of a series of traditionally published Regency romances and indie-published paranormal romances. Known for her characters “who slip readily into one’s heart,” Meredith’s heart belongs to her husband and two children. Meredith’s second favorite pastime is teaching others to write.

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