“NOTES, do you make them? Have you tried taping and transcribing them? What works for you?”
When I put this topic on the schedule, I was actually asking about notes for writing, but I did not make myself clear. It worked out fine, though, as several posts had interesting insights in them on other uses for notes.
I believe that I covered most of my need for such things under a past topic: LISTS. However, something came up just last week that made me add to the ‘note’ that I send to my interviewees; (I neglected to advise that most of our readers, along with ourselves, are writers. I believe that it would have made a difference in the interviewee’s answers and explanations.)
At any rate, as for my own writing, well, I just had better be near my computer or at least a device that has Word or another program because scribbled notes don’t cut it for me.
My handwriting was never wonderful, and now that arthritis, (and the fact that I think a lot faster than I can write), makes most notes difficult, if not downright impossible, to decipher.
I spend more time trying to figure out what in the world I was trying to say than actually getting it onto a screen, because really, it is so much easier to think and write that way for me.
I LOVE word processing! I would never attempt a long short story, a novel or, Heaven forbid, a play, without word processing. I do not believe that it would ever be possible for me to get them finished. Poems and songs were hard enough for me to write out and type. Stories flow, when I get myself to the keyboard. I may change things around, I may add ideas, but generally, it comes, and as we have discussed before, sometimes the characters have minds of their own and I let them take over when they assert themselves. I have been kicking myself for not getting some of my works finished sooner, but I can tell you, had some of them stayed on my constricted ideas of the plot, I know they would not have been as good as they are,(or would be worse than they are, you can take your pick!) I easily edit and make adjustments which are clear to me immediately, otherwise, my writings on paper not only are in poor handwriting, there are also a lot of scratching out, differently chosen words inserted with arrows leading to the right spot, words and lines circled, (and those also have arrows leading to where I decided I have them in the wrong order, or “where I had the word order wrong”, see?)
You should have seen my song lyric papers, while trying to get the rhyme and syllable count down. I can make the changes clearly and quickly at a screen, with a keyboard. I may have stuck with songs and looked harder for collaborators had I had word processing. (Some musicians were willing, but we didn’t mesh, but I digress, as usual.)
Have you tried recording notes? I had a mini tape recorder, or actually, I had two; they fell apart one right after the other. I have a number little tapes with story ideas, story starts, notes for stories, recipes, tips, and ideas,
and all are stuck on the tapes, irretrievable.
Please don’t be too upset; they were probably going to be stuck there anyway.
I would try to transcribe them and without being a fast, clear writer, (or fast at the keyboard), it took a ridiculous amount of time for me to try to get the notes from the tapes to paper or screen, and I had given up anyway, until I had enough time.
[Yeah, I’ll let you know if that ever happens.]
No matter. They are so old, I bet I have already used them or that they are pretty bad anyway.
(Let me be honest; not every idea is a brilliant idea.)
It would never have been worth it to hire a transcriptionist, a thought that had crossed my mind at one point.
It took me up until quite recently to be smart enough to use my smartphone. I have Word on it and anything that I put there will go straight to The Cloud and, (drum roll, please), I can do Speech-to-Text. My notes are in print, ready to pull up, ready to cut and paste, ready to be edited into a started WIP, or to begin another.
Or not, because, like I said, not every idea is brilliant.
But at least I won’t forget or lose a decent thought.
If an edit comes to me in the shower, I can get it down as soon as I get reasonably dry. If I am out, I can type while someone else is driving or dictate an idea to Bixby, (the Samsung voice-activated assistant), to open Word, or to take a “Samsung Note” for me, which shows up as an icon on my home screen, and can be sent to The Cloud, where it can be pulled up on the computer.
I feel so free… and I feel like a fool. I’ve had those tools for years and never utilized them.
Stand back and watch me work!