Microsoft One Note is a wonderful program for writers that comes free with MS Office 2007. Basically it’s a file folder for all your notes, outlines, research, character sketches, and submissions. There are many ways you can use this program. I’m going to show you how I use it.
For each project (novel, short story, article, etc.), I open a tab. I also have a tab for personal information, blogs, and general research.
Here’s how I set it up for a novel.
Notebook – Novel’s name
Section – Summaries and Outlines
One Sentence Summary
One Paragraph Summary
One Page Synopsis
Four Page Synopsis
Outline (I don’t use an outline, but if you do, you might place it here make another section depending on how extensive it is.
Section – Misc. (This is for any notes that don’t fit elsewhere)
Section – Submissions
Tracking Submissions (On this page I use an Excel Chart, but you don’t have to. Whatever method works for you.’
Section – Research (I keep all my research notes here. When you research on the internet, you can print any internet pages directly to One Note
Section – Characters (I use a multi-section here and have a subsection for each one.
MS One Note can also be used for ideas and future projects. Just open up an ideas notebook. There are countless ways a writer can use MS One Note. Experiment with it and set it up to meet your needs.