The Power of Post-Its

post-its_manuscriptTo get ready for today’s Write-a-thon, I went out and spent about seven dollars on Post-Its. They’re expensive! There’s little colored flags and tiny fluorescent Post-Its for mini notes.

Why do I do this? Because I think that using this special method will somehow, inexplicably make this final revision process fly smoothly. There are some changes that need to be threaded through from start to finish. So I’m going to assign a color to it and mark up all the pages.

I’ve never actually done this before. Anna DeStefano suggested this in a workshop at RWA and her process is very close to my process: Fast Draft the “ugly draft”, fix global/structural issues, then line edit. She’s just way more organized — and way more successful. 🙂

Another part of it is magic. Yes. Magic. I think feeling I have a special trick calms me down. I know it’s all psych0logical. Every big endeavor needs a special mind trick and this time, it’s Post-Its.

There are so many colors. So pretty!

No Comments

  1. Dara
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 09:19:09

    Oooh, pretty….

    I must admit I have a weakness for office supplies. I love buying pens, notebooks, post-its….it’s thrilling for me 😛

    I went through sooo many of those in college too! Some of the textbooks I have still have the little flag ones in them.

    That sounds like a great idea though–that’s gonna be something I’ll try when the time comes.

  2. Jeannie Lin
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 14:10:12

    Dara – I have colored binder clips. 🙂

  3. Victoria Dixon
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 14:16:21

    I’ve done the postits before. I’m currently using index cards to help me see the big picture as I plot my next novel. 🙂 You’ve got to find some (excuse the term) anal method of organizing this stuff! It’s too much detail for an unprepared brain to handle. All of the zombies of the world were without a doubt unprepared writers! (Now there’s a paranormal story idea for you. ;D)

  4. Jeannie Lin
    Sep 04, 2009 @ 14:19:59

    Funny you should mention zombies…there’s a lively discussion I started on a forum because I wanted to feature jiangshi in my new project — which of course must hop after their victims. 🙂

    My sister couldn’t stop laughing. But it’s not a comedy.

  5. Flicka Holt
    Sep 05, 2009 @ 02:53:24

    I also have this strange hope that the right office supplies will turn me into a more organized, not to better brighter writer. You have no idea how many Moleskins I have, for example. SO pretty! And colored little mini post its. Yup, I have those too.

    But then I always end up doing everything digitally anyway…

  6. Jeannie Lin
    Sep 05, 2009 @ 06:57:02

    Flicka – I’m sure I have Post It flags somewhere among my boxes of office supplies, but I told my husband I’d be looking for them for hours and then STILL go out and buy them anyway. So we skipped the hour of frustration.

    The method seems to be working! This is the first time I’m not starting on page 1 and just going through and editing it page by page in sequence.The manuscript was already pretty polished since this was the one that had been submitted to agents and editors. Sticking to one thread of changes at a time is keeping me focused. Otherwise this would be so daunting. By the end, I’ll have made a bunch of passes through the manuscript, concentrating on a different change each time.