Chasing After Ideas With a Paper and Pen


notebook-budget-pen Since my post on recording ideas (in which I practically stuffed a pen in your bags/briefcases/pockets), I decided to add something to my pen carrying habit. Instead of just being satisfied at having a pen in my bag, I decided to make sure to take the pen out every time I had a few minutes.

Chasing My Ideas

I added a small book in my tote and stuck a pen in it. I took it out every time I was out, was waiting for something or had a few minutes. I took it out on my way to school, waiting for my class, and on my way back. I even pulled it out while playing scrabble as I waited for other people to complete their turns. I wanted to see if I could make ideas come to me when I called them.

Coming up a Blank the First Time

The first time I took the note book and pen out, all I did was stare at the blank page and finally ended up doodling my name. Not a single thought or idea came to me. The second time, I was getting frustrated again when a thought occurred to me. "What does a person do when brain storming fails?" I wrote it down immediately.

All it Can Take is One Idea or Thought to Open the Floodgates

That thought is still sitting alone on a page. But it catapulted my brain into overdrive. Soon afterwards my brain was flooding with possibilities in answer to that question. Most of them were discarded almost immediately. But the ideas stemming from them took a whole new direction.

Jot Down Everything

Suddenly, I'm filling pages. Not every idea I get is good (actually, most of the are plain mediocre) or even well thought out but I write everything down and go through each point later. What seems like a bad idea today, may present an opportunity tomorrow. "Always remember, one bad idea gives rise to 10 better and at least one great one!" That used to be my father's mantra every time I would stop myself from voicing an idea saying it was 'stupid'.

My own mantra? Get the bad ideas out as fast as you can and make way for the great ones. Okay, so I may have heard my dad say that one too.

Finally: A Habit Formed

After doing this for the past two weeks, scribbling in my notebook has become a habit. My fingers start to itch if I'm sitting idle for more than a few minutes and stepping out without a notebook is unthinkable!

What do you do? Do you wait for ideas to come to you or do you go chasing after them?

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B J Keltz said...
January 22, 2009 at 6:07 PM  

I can't imagine going anywhere without paper and pen. I was caught recently, needing to write down an email address and only had a small purse with me. I was so upset! Hubby came to the rescue with a receipt, and I vowed to never use too-small purses again...even on a night out!

Magnus said...
January 23, 2009 at 6:58 PM  

You might be interested in the Pulse. Look for review in March issue of Shufflegazine.

Samar Owais said...
January 24, 2009 at 4:46 AM  

B J: I can't either now. Those small clutch bags so in fashion now are not very practical since they can only store one thing at a time.

You know, I can do another post on the most weird surfaces I've jotted down stuff. There are quite a few!

Magnus: Thanks for stopping by. I'll definitely be looking into it when I buy my first mac :)

I have to say, considering how useful the smartpen technology can be, it's not that expensive.

Daanish said...
January 25, 2009 at 2:28 PM  

sometimes while driving,I cannot write so I keep singing my thought until I pulled over to write.It will be a good idea even tag people to write about most weird surfaces they have jolted down.It will be fun.Lets do it :)

Cheryl Wright said...
January 25, 2009 at 3:46 PM  

I'd sooner leave home without underwear than without a notebook and pen. Sometimes ideas invite themselves in, most times I have to hunt them down but with pen and notebook always handy, I always have somewhere to catch and hold them.

Samar Owais said...
January 25, 2009 at 8:25 PM  

Daanish: I make it a point to tell someone that I have to jot down something when I get home or quickly type in a couple of keywords on my cell phone's note taker while I'm at a traffic signal.

Cheryl: You had me laughing hard! What is the strangest surface you've ever written on? :)Welcome to the base.

Tony said...
January 27, 2009 at 1:24 AM  

That's a good idea. I have a pen in my car that I keep for those times when I need a pen, but I never really carry one on me all the time. I bet I lost lots of ideas by not having a pen and paper handy. That's a good tip - thanks

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