My writing journey has been a real learning curve and I totally love where it has taken me. I still have much to learn. And I have that thirst to learn.
My disabilities have prepared me in many ways. One of those ways is in regards to organization. For me, this is a constant work in progress. Things go belly up when I go down big time. Now, it is always good for everyone to be organized but I think organization is even more important for a disabled person. I find that the seek and find game clouds the mind to overload capacity and on a bad day can totally throw me over the edge exasperating my chronic ailments. Therefore, I find it important to allocate homes for items… pair clothes item together such as sets regularly worn together; underwear; color-code items such as skirts, tops, shirts in their individual sections.
I do so love clear uncluttered benches, but technically, a kitchen is a work area. To work for me, organization in this area means items I use on a daily basis being easily accessible. This means
on the bench in their allocated and safe location. So benches can look cluttered. But this saves me time and energy. Cleaning is kept to a minimum. (Although my daughter does most of this for me, she is already one busy lass!)
Many homes have a microwave alcove below the bench or high above the bench. I feel that both these places are dangerous for anyone lifting food out and up or out and down, regardless of whether they are able-bodied or not. A place on the bench is great. Better still, if you can have a strong well-fitted shelf only about twenty centimetres above the bench… not high… with space on the bench in front so hot items can be put down safely. Having small space underneath makes it easier to clean under, while still keeping it safe to lift food from the microwave.
I saw a terrific idea the other day, using a system like a curtain rod along the walls hang baskets for storage with a clearance under them making great storage for small items while giving ease of cleaning of the bench below.
Organization for writing
Have you downloaded an app and spent the next six months trying to understand all its features? I have downloaded several writing apps and I know if I persisted, I would have learnt to use them. But, hey, I want to write NOW! Today! Not start in six months. I have gone back to what I know.
To give me an almost paperless set-up for writing, here are the programs/apps I use:
Foxit Reader (PDF)
Two usb sticks or external hard drives specifically for writing.
1. Microsoft Word
Most of you would have used a word document program. My choice is MS Word. (I am not sponsored by them in any way)
Use of Add-ons such as Grammarly.
Spell check (can also be switched off while writing if desired)
Word count – which I love, keeps me on track
It can be formatted for digital upload and Createaspace by my Supergirl, Kadi.
To be more time efficient, I have set up my own:
‘book’ template so that it is set out and I can just go in and replace the title of my novel, bi-lines etc and add each chapter when I am happy with it. Saves so much time.
Can insert photos, make diagrams, add links and much more.
I can set more frequent auto saves.
Free courses for MS word etcetera are offered on several sites on-line.
2. MS Excel
MS Excel is great it has helped me stay organised by
Allowing me to Format it to my specifications:
To organize and tally my daily word count of the individual chapters that I have input from MS word to reach my final goal – see? Organized!
Totals word count from previous entries.
Storing a brief overview of my chapters.
I love OneNote. Why?
This means I can set up a 'notebook' labelled with the title of the novel that I am writing.
Each Notebook appears down the left-hand column of the screen for easy access. Each Notebook has the capacity for multiple section tabs to be added and appropriately named as desired, therefore dividing each Notebook into easy categories, to separate your favourite sub-titles such as Characters, Plot, Scenes, Chapter Planning, Research Chapters etcetera.
Each section tab is along the top. Each allocated section tab has a feature for adding necessary multiple ‘pages’. Page headings appear down the right-hand side for easy access.
Notes, Photos, diagrams, links, audios' can be embedded on these pages. Great for saving maps and other research information.
The tool bar for OneNote is very similar to MS Word.
Can print straight to OneNote to save items.
Has an Android version for Android phones and Android tablets which makes it ideal for notes, photos or writing while away from your computer. With an account with Microsoft, these notes etcetera, can be synced with your computer so that it will show up in your computer’s OneNote program. This can be copied and pasted, if desired, into your MS word document file etcetera...
OneNote auto saves everything… no saving necessary but I like to back it up just encase.
Summary of OneNote:
My OneNote contains several Notebooks which I can locate easily along the left-hand side of the screen.
One of my Notebooks is labelled with my currant ‘Story title’.
When I open the Notebook, it contains the section tabs running across the top of my Notebook which I have individually labelled.
One of these section tabs is labelled ‘Characters’.
When I click on this section tab, I have a list on the right-hand side of my screen with all my ‘page headings’ listing my individual characters’ names.
I can click on the desired character page and go directly to that character's info somewhat like a criminal profile.
4. USB Sticks
I like to keep 2 USB - Why two? I like to keep a back-up file for safety
I name one USB with my pen name and the other with CJB Back-Up.
In the USB/external hard drive, I have my main writing folders. These are broken down into sub-files which are then also broken down into further sub-files etcetera, with different labels so I can find what I am looking for easier.
I save all my work regularly regardless of whether I have auto save on or not. I don’t want to lose that light bulb run of events that came to me in my defocused mode.
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Such as a free copy of my one-note template and other exclusive weekly content, sign-up to my mailing list.
Visit www.ceceliajbonwick.com/home where you will be given the opportunity to sign-up before entering the site - or checkout the side pane of our main web-pages.
Please note, you will need to have access to a OneNote program to run my OneNote template.
Other folder templates will be added over the next few months. These templates are basic, but save time.
These templates may only work with the Microsoft Office programs/apps such as MS Word or compatible programs and apps. The App store, I believe, you can download Word Mobile, Excel and OneNote free of charge. I haven’t used them, so do not know if they are compatible with my personal templates. I know Microsoft Office 365 current addition, does.
Life is an unpredictable event. I have found that it is important to make the most of each day… love those closes to you a heap more each day… reach for your dreams today… And for you to sleep well at night, never trample any one down to reach your goals or dreams. Most importantly, smile and think positive