I wanted to take some time today to talk about my creative method of taking notes and distilling ideas to the core. I think it’s interesting, especially for myself, to have some insight on how I am using my bullet point diary, my DM journal and my computer notes together. I think this can be greatly improved, but it’s working quite well for me already.
I always carry multiple journals with me when I go out of the door:
· My DM journal, most important and gets the bulk of my writing. In this I write ideas and encounters for games and for this blog and I doodle some interesting locations. I have filled my first DM journal now in about 1 year and 3 months (but most of it was done the last 4 months).
· My creative, bullet point diary. I have one notebook where I keep track of my ideas, what I’m working on, what I’m thinking about, what I’m enthusiastic about or not. I really like this concept, because it makes me feel accomplished if I’m thinking of a lot of ideas, even if I don’t work them all out. Also I can flip back and see what ideas I have forgotten and why I’m not working on them anymore.
· My computer notes are just random and I never look at them anymore. But sometimes I find some interesting things when I do search for something.
Basically, the bullet point diary gives a quick overview of what I’m thinking of and toying around with. My DM journal is to work those ideas out in practical use, while my computer notes are to work things out in great detail.
What I would like to do more often is to go back into my journals and see what inspires me in these journals and what is not inspiring to me. The diary helps me to give a quick overview to see what I was enthusiast about, the DM journal can help going into more detail about these topic, while I make notes of my favorite inspiration on computer notes. This helps me boil down the likeable subjects to a bare minimum and start building on those core items again.
I’ve done this before out of some ideas I was toying with and this is what the core looked liked:
Things I like:
· The Three Brothers - The inn is also used as the chapel twice a week.
· Mirelwade – village on an island in the river Mir (Common)/Mirlan (Elven)/Meir (Dwarven)
· Illan’s Ignited – A secretive group of elite individuals that try to become magical cyborgs (transhumanist).
· Dreamsalt - A mineral that makes you have the best dreams, but can have side effects.
· Arawynn – The God of Dreams and the Otherworld.
· Glim – The God of Sun and Coin
· Bludge – The dead Orcish demigod of Music.
· The Mirage - A Pilgrims path
· Gwinel – A cleric of Glim, also part of the Illan’s Ignited, who is always interested in magical items, and identifies for some coin/trade.
· Trasler’s Wealth – An adventurer’s Kingdom and City, led by Treslar, the Adventurers-King.