Keeping Each Book Straight

Someone asked me once, as I’ve written more than 60 books now, how do I keep the characters straight? How do I know who’s who? What all their names are? Who’s related to who and so on.

Well. It used to be a card system.

Each book has it’s own index card, with cast photos on, and important relevant info – well usually they’d also contain family members and so on, but sometimes the system falls to pieces 😉 C stands for contracted, P for published. This one is based on a true story – I just accelerated the time line from 5 months to 5 weeks.

But the cards just weren’t working out. So I’m in the process of transferring everything to a new system. One I already had in place for the names of all the characters. And no I don’t know why all these are sideways when they are the right way up on the computer. Sigh. Each section has 26 pages, so I simply add names to them. Or pick names where I haven’t use a letter yet. (Hence we have a Zander, Zara and a Quinn.) (Oh and any suggestions for a girls name beginning with Q… throw them my way.)

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In the new books, yes I had to get two as the published books filled a file on their own, each book has a page rather than a tiny card. I would have preferred all the books the same, but as the shop I bought the owls from is closed – actually closed their branch in town at Christmas – I can’t get one. They don’t have them online, I looked. And even if shops were open, the nearest branch is now 20 miles away and a long way to go just on the off chance.

And for the current work in progress, as well as a page in the red book, all the details, including the blurb, which for security reasons have been redacted, are on a clipboard.

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So, there you go. How to keep 60 plus books straight. Keeping the characters straight however… well come back next week to see how that issue goes.

2 thoughts on “Keeping Each Book Straight

  1. I love how organized you are. I’ve only written about a dozen pieces, and it’s hard to keep everything straight. I can’t imagine 60+. I think I’ll go back and follow your example.

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