I love index cards. I have a Black Box o’ Doom on my desk full of index cards. Each one is a story. No, I mean each one is a story. Title and word count on the top line. Underneath, I write the date the story was submitted somewhere and the place submitted to, with room at the end of the line to log the date it was returned–OR ACCEPTED. They’re sorted by: not in submission now, short stories, flash (2000 words or fewer–NOT “OR LESS”), novels, stories sold, flash sold, novels sold and resting. I call it “resting”. What it really means is “sucky”.
Index cards helped me revise SAGE, my big fat fantasy, and will help me revise it again. I wrote every scene I liked and wanted to keep on an index card and shuffled them around until the story made sense. This time, I’m going to write every scene in the book (because I only put back in the scenes I liked) and see if there are any I liked but would be better elsewhere after all, or better in a separate book. NOTE TO SARA: I do have a copy of the book as it is, labeled Sara’s Version, which will remain untouched.
I used index cards during NaNo. I cut them in half and, on each little square, I wrote the chapter title, the characters (initials only, for brevity) with the POV character’s initial circled and the main action/revelation/clue. It should help me in the revision process. That’s my fond hope, anyway.
WRITING PROMPT: How does your main character organize things–or does he/she? Write someone who is very organized and what his/her method is.