When I write rough drafts for my stories, I’ve discovered that almost anything will work for me–notebook paper, notepads, scraps of paper that are around, the computer, the Notes App on my phone–pretty much anything that will allow me to get the idea into a fixed form.
However, once I’m ready to start drafting the “Working Draft,” I try whenever possible (for fiction) to move to SimpleNote. I like SimpleNote because it is free (at least it was for me when I signed up at simplenote.com), but even more than that, I like it and use it because it allows me to quickly and easily sync between all my devices and as well as wherever I may be. It has a website that you can use and log into, or an app that you can download. I personally use the website on my laptop and the app on my phone and tablet.
For instance, I started Project OPaK on my phone at Walgreens Pharmacy while waiting on a prescription to be filled. I hadn’t intended on waiting for the prescription, but since the pharmacist said that it wouldn’t take that long, I waited and in that time, I was able to write 3 basic paragraphs on my phone. I can now log into my SimpleNote account on my computer and expand those paragraphs more. Also, if I want to, as long as I log into my account and bring up the story beforehand, I disconnect from the internet while I’m writing to give myself a distraction free writing session and then when I reconnect to the internet, I only need to hit the little “save” button on the screen and my changes are uploaded to the server.
For me, SimpleNote gives me the flexibility to work on the working draft of the story pretty much anywhere even if the conditions aren’t ideal. If I were ever to have enough time when school starts (which is doubtful) and I wanted to work on my story, I could log into my account on the school’s library computers or the writing center ones and use them to work on Project OPaK or any other story that I’m writing (so at least I know the capability is there should there be any downtime). Now, before this starts to sound like an ad, there are many other apps that do the same thing/similar things (EverNote and OneNote are two that come to mind immediately), but in my quest to work “smarter, not harder,” I’ve found that SimpleNote helps to increase my productivity by allowing me to access my stories everywhere I go and it helps my writing process because I know that I always have access to the most current version of my story available for editing on SimpleNote’s servers.