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How to Outline with Mind Maps

Outlines! Love ’em or Hate ’em?

Thing is… outlines are an amazing tool that save writers tons of time. And they don’t have to restrict your creativity. Learn how to make outlines your new best friend with the Mind Map Outline Technique

Whatever you feel about outlining, Mind Maps are a fantastic tool! They are a fast, visual way to ‘see’ your story. Use them to outline your plot, a scene and every twist and turn of your amazing idea. 

Mind Maps link ideas in the form of building blocks by branching out from a single starting point. They were first created in the late 1960s by Tony Buzan. 

Where to start: 

The good news is you can start from any point of your story — concept, character or at the climax. However, sooner is better. Save your writing time for writing, not scraping dead ends and starting over. Mind Maps help you think through all the twists and turns of you story, and test out different story options before wasting hours writing. 

If you start from the idea stage, the key is to list everything that defines your concept. You then connect it to the main character or topic (for non-fiction), plot points and the biggest story twists or topic points. Keep adding whatever pops into your head, and branch out from that point. You will either play out the idea or create an outline that will guide your writing.

Mind Maps are also useful for ‘spot outlining.’ Sometimes — possibly in the middle of your story (the Second Act) — things bog down. You can go in and just brainstorm that section of your project with Mind Maps

If you’d like a quick lesson on how to Mind Map click below to download the FREE Pdf that fits what you are writing — screenplays, novels or non-fiction.

Happy writing — and outlining!





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The Birder Journal – Coming Soon

The Birder Journal is a field companion that’s just the right size to be useful for all your outings. Half of the journal offers full pages for times when you really get into journaling – with plenty of sketches and notes. The other half allows two entries per page. They are there for the basic facts, and a small area for a quick sketch or notes. With 270 entries possible — The Birder Journal will become a trusty companion.

As a special bonus…

The Birder Journal is filled with amazing bird illustrations by Sharon Mann… like the one featured below.


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Branching Out with our Ideas!

When testing our first Idea Journal, we discovered interest but that users wanted it for their specific idea-building projects. So, we decided to make a whole line of Idea Journals. That means, we’ve changed it up a bit and make journals for niche audiences. Our first two Idea Journals will be available soon. Here’s the breakdown:

First up: The Idea Journal for Screenwritersidea_journal_screenwriters_cover

Take all those cool, almost amazing script ideas and build them into blockbuster concepts. The Idea Journal for Screenwriters comes with tips to make your ideas better, and plenty of space to write everything down. Never lose another great idea–or part of a great idea looking to grow!

“New ideas pass through three periods:

1) It can’t be done.

2) It probably can be done, but it’s not worth doing.

3) I knew it was a good idea all along!”

– Arthur C. Clarke, science fiction writer

Next up: The Idea Journal for Fiction Writers


 Geared for writing a novel, The Idea Journal for Fiction Writers also offers tips and plenty of space to make every idea better. The goal is to collect your ideas, look for ones that connect, as you build your idea into something that can spawn a riveting storyline.

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The Idea Journal – Cover Reveal

Ta-da! Here’s our newest book — coming out in roughly a week!

What do you think of the cover?

And here’s a peek at the back cover:


We’re excited to reveal The Idea Journal! It’s a great book for all creatives to collect and build on their ideas, because ideas tend to come out in bits and pieces. Keep them all together in one place and great things can happen!

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The 100 Script Challenge Journal

100-script-challenge-coverTAKE THE CHALLENGE!

Writers need to read! Especially screenwriters, because every produced screenplay is its own master class. 

But why 100 scripts?

Because 99 isn’t enough and 101 is completely overdoing it. Ha.

Honestly, if you do something 100 times, you will grow as a writer and an expert on screenplays. You’ll also stockpile some seriously useful and impressive notes about tips and tricks you can use when you’re writing.

And you’ll have it all in one place — in your journal — every time you work on your screenplay. 

Which scripts should I read?

That’s up to you, but frankly, read everything you can find. The scripts can be within your chosen genre, blockbusters, Oscar winners or complete flops. It doesn’t matter, because any script you read will teach you something.

The 100 Script Challenge Journal is about digging into the mechanics of a screenplay. As you read, focus on the script’s structure, dialogue, characters, subtext, and all the other elements that makeup a script. Take notes about what works and why. 

Good notes are your secret weapon the next time you sit down to write!

The 100 Script Challenge Journal is on Amazon!