Friday, August 06, 2010

My Tools

My husband, Matt, sometimes blogs about the tools he uses as a children's book illustrator (and, by the way, he just finished sketches for the new Gail Carson Levine poetry book that he's working on, and it's BRILLIANT).  So I thought I would share with you some of my tools.  This will not be very exciting.  Um, but keep reading anyway.

So as I may have mentioned fifteen thousand times, I hand-write my novels.  I thought I may switch from that to typing directly into a computer, but when it was time to start writing the sequel to GET WELL SOON, I went right back to the ol' notebooks.  My original favorite notebooks to write in were these:
Mead Wireless Neatbooks.  I went to the Mead website, and apparently they don't exist anymore.  Or at least not on their website.  You can get equally fine, generic Walgreen's ones, too.  I have no idea why I used these for my first two novels.  They are floppy, and the pages fall out.  But they were cheap.

For my last novel and my current one, I decided to pony up the cash (we're talking $3, people!) for cuter notebooks.  I mean, really, I'm writing novels here.  I might as well treat myself to nicer notebooks.  I found these

[PICTURE NOT AVAILABLE because I couldn't find it online, and I want to get this blog post up before Romy wakes up.  Imagine a blue spiral notebook with strawberries dotting the cover, and a stretchy elastic band to be used as a page marker.]

and bought a bunch, to last me through DON'T STOP NOW and the first chunk of my current novel.  I like the sturdiness of the backing, as well as the stretchy page-marker thing attached to the back.  Although, the studs that connect the band to the notebook do create a bump while I write.  It is helpful to let me know where I left off in the notebook.

Currently I am on notebook number three in The Sequel, and it is my favorite notebook by far.  It's made by a fancy environmental brand, Greenroom, and has lovely, light green pages that feel very smooth as I write on them.  I now own two notebooks by them, the Floral and the Word (both found here on their lovely website, where I could only float over the image but not copy it and put it up on my blog.  Yes, I could actually take a picture of my notebooks, but that would mean getting up.)

Now for the pen.  I know a lot of people really enjoy rollerballs, but I find that I write so fast already that rollerballs make my handwriting too messy.  And they don't feel very smooth.  I prefer a medium point ballpoint pen.  I originally really wanted to write with this:
The classic Bic Cristal.  Do you know why?  I'm going to let you guess.  In the comments.  The clue is that it was used in one of my favorite movies of all time by the main character.  Please, do guess.  As far as writing goes, it tends to get stuck on the page.  Not smooth enough.

Instead, I found this and have used it for all four of my novels:
Bic Ultimates with Easy Glide!  They look pretty and sparkly but are really just black pens.  Nice and lightweight, perfectly rolling.  I bought two boxes of them, and I hope they never die.  I empty several pens per book.

I suppose I should go out to a store now that it's school supply time to score me some extra pens and notebooks.  You never know when they'll discontinue your favorites.  Just look what happened to Chandler's (still, freakishly, my most-commented on blog post EVER).


Kimber said...

The Bic Ultimate pens look awesome...but do they come in blue ink as well? My kids tease me constantly about my obsession with blue ink. For me black ink = evil:)

Julie H said...

You know, Kimber, I'm not sure. Evil, like, really evil?

Kimber said...

lol Like mega-evil! My fingers cramp and my mind goes blank when I attempt to write with a black pen:)

Ronni said...

Definitely stock up on notebooks and pens now that IL is taking a tax holiday for school supplies!!!

I think I'm going to go back to notebooks for writing as well. Lord knows I buy tons of them.