Using index cards to plot

So I decided that while I love Scrivener, and its ability to let you move your scenes around as index cards, I needed the physicality of real index cards, so today I started writing all my scenes out on them. When I went to find my stash of index cards though, I found that I’d done this before: for the scenes of a short story that I’d written as part of a course on short story writing I took in my last year of college. I’d forgotten about the cards, but not about the story. Now that I see the cards, I remember them and remember how much they helped in getting the story organized. Which makes me feel they’ll work now to figure out what the missing element in my plot is.

Now it’s a majorly different thing to plot out scenes on cards for a short story than for a novel, but the basic principle is the same. Soon my living room floor will be covered with index cards, and I couldn’t be happier.

Check out this post from author Holly Lisle about plotting out a book on index cards. Actually the post talks all about plotting under pressure, leading up to using index cards to plot. I would use most of her method except when I was done getting them in order, I’ll return to Scrivener to get them in order there and add any new ones I came up with.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have 15 more scenes to get down on index cards.

Happy writing!


About thewritingblues

I'm a writer working on a YA dystopian novel and blogging on my progress - or lack thereof - and other cool writing stuff.
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