My husband is a fancy schmancy CTO and uses a lot of fancy schmancy technology in his life. His belt loops runneth over with gadgetry. When he talks tech, my eyes glaze. It’s ok to tell you this. He knows. And as a result of his technological prowess, I know next to nothing. I can’t even put music on my own iPod. By the way, has anyone seen my iPod?
So a couple of weeks ago when I was starting to think about beginning my research for the Sharon Creech bio, I looked at him organizing one of his (many!) presentations. He was using One Note, and it had all these sections and sub-folders and stuff that allowed him to be nice and organized. He had given me a tutorial a couple of years ago on how to use it, thinking it would help me be better orgainized for my non-fiction work. At the time it was too overwhelming for my creative and easily-frustrated mind, and plus I hadn’t asked for his help then, so my ears and eyes resisted all information even though my head nodded at the appropriate times. I’m really good at that move. I stubbornly clung to my trusty (handy dandy?) notebook for the last five non-fiction books. But finally I was ready to learn something new.
Anyway, I made him stop working and show me how to use the program again.
And man, that thing is handy. All the information is in one place AND I can organize it however I want. The program really forces me to think about how I want to organize my notes, and by extension, my book, which is frustrating for my loop-d-loop mind to get used to, but being able to have all the research, my own typed or handwritten notes (this is why I love tablet computers), electronic article clippings, photos, etc. in sections with sub-folders means that I don’t have to flip through countless notebook pages looking for that note I made about that thing she did back in whatever year that was. And since I can rearrange the information and copy it, it’s easy to keep chapter sections together even if I’m using clippings of the same article for different chapters, or to completely reorder things as I get a better idea of my outline.
Ahhh! Sweet organization. It’s a relief to be able to find things with the click of a mouse. Between this and YWriter, will I ever use a notebook again?
Maybe for the grocery list.