Occasionally I have other writers ask me how I write, and what products I use to make writing and editing easier for myself. I figured instead of just tweeting links constantly, putting them all in one place would be the easiest thing. I will try to keep this page updated so as I stumble on more things I like, I’ll add them.
I write all of my manuscripts by hand, I also do most of my editing on paper. This is just the easiest process for me – but I understand if it’s not a good process for you, I’m not here to convince anyone. But if you’re looking for a binder to help keep your writing life together, I have found this one to be AMAZING.
Once I print out my manuscript, I use a standard 3-hole punch and then put all the pages into the binder.
Word of warning, it’s large. There are smaller versions, but I like lugging this behemoth around. There are smaller options available on Amazon.
This thing has pockets and folder tabs galore. It can easily hold a 400 page manuscript. It might be able to go up to 500-600 pages, but I’ve never had a manuscript that length so I can’t attest to it personally.
It also has a shoulder strap.
I love this thing because I’m able to keep all my notes, pens, notebooks, etc. all in one place while I’m editing.
I also have a smaller version of this binder that I use for writing. This is the same brand as the binder above, but it’s not quite as bulky. I usually just have a 5-subject notebook in this and an assortment of gel pens.
I’m a notebook snob. I’ve accepted this part of myself. My husband thinks I’m completely insane because of this. But I swear, some paper really feels different as you write on it. Some paper feels like it offers resistance against the pen, and I hate that. These notebooks I’ve found offer no resistance when I use my gel pens, and I get very little smearing.
I usually buy these in bulk about a month after school starts, and they’re all marked down like crazy on clearance. I find that one 5-subject notebook is perfect for my outlining, notes, and hand-written pages for a project.
I’m obsessed with gel pens. At all times I’ve probably got around two hundred in my house. I’ve seen complaints about gel pens drying up if they sit for too long without being used. But I’ve gotta tell you, in the four years I’ve been using them, I’ve probably had two or three total dry up. It doesn’t appear to be a common problem.
My only complaint about most gel pen assortments, is that there are SO MANY neon and pastel colors. I can’t write with those on standard notebooks, so I have an over-flowing bin filled with all these cast-off colors. That being said, being able to write with glitter or metallic gel pens makes it all worth it.
Here are some of my favorite sets:
This set has 100 pens and 100 refills. I do find that the point on these varies sometimes, but I’m not a stickler for that. This set also has a lot less of the pastel and neon colors than the other options do.
This wasn’t my favorite set, but it got the job done. I wasn’t crazy about it because I felt it had more neon/pastel than others.
This is a much cheaper set than the others, and I had pretty good luck with it. Not my favorite though.
I no longer use a booklight, since I have an office now. But for the past five years, most of the time I wrote my manuscript by booklight. I’ve had several I hated, this is the light I’ve had the best luck with.
I always keep a small notebook in my purse, as I usually get ideas for my novels while I’m in the car, or waiting in line somewhere. These are the notebooks I like best on the go.
Books I use
During my writing and editing processes there are a few books that I use as tools. Here’s a short list of the ones I use most often.
Self Editing for Fiction Writers is a great book to help you edit your own work before self-publishing or querying. I will say that you should still have betas and critique partners read your work before sending it out, but this book should give you the confidence to get your writing in a good place before sending it out to your readers.
Rules for Writers is another great book that can help with grammar, editing, citing sources, abbreviations, etc. Most questions you’ll have in writing should be covered in this book.
And all the writing thesauruses are invaluable. If you don’t have them already, buy them all RIGHT NOW.
The emotional thesaurus. This has helped me many times as I have issues with writing emotions and body language. If you need help in these areas as you’re writing, be sure to pick it up!
Need to come up with some flaws for your characters or some negative traits? Drawing a blank? The negative trait thesaurus exists for exactly that!
On the flip side, if you need positive traits there’s a thesaurus for that as well.
There are also a few other books in the writing thesaurus line, The Urban Setting Thesaurus, The Rural Setting Thesaurus, and The Emotional Wound Thesaurus. I have never used any of these, so I cannot vouch for them personally, but I’m sure they’re just as helpful as the others!
I think that covers all of the products I typically use for my writing. I don’t really use highlighters, or other office supplies. But if you think I missed anything, tweet at me and I’ll update the list! 😊
Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you buy things, I might get a cut of the purchase so I can buy more gel pens. Please help fund my addiction :p