I’m heading to NY and Washington DC soon. Taking a trip with the family. In addition to enjoying the time exploring with my family I’m really looking forward to embracing the city. You see, I have a book that partially takes place in DC and one that partially takes place in NY.

Now, I’ve been to both cities several times. However, I’m looking forward to visiting again. I can take mental notes while I’m there and use them to create better scenes in both manuscripts.

How Do You Take Mental Notes?

I try to remember the five senses when taking mental notes. What am I seeing? What am I smelling? Hearing? In terms of the sense of touch I think more about the weather and how the air feels or how the city feels. For example, hurried, stressed, anticipatory etc… I’ll leave taste out of it:-D.

I do carry a notebook with me and use it from time to time, however I’m more likely to journal at the end of the day and document my observations of the day. Photographs help capture a scene too.

Next time you’re out and about practice taking mental notes. Stop and take a look around you. What do you hear? Smell? See and feel?

Write sentences in your head that describe the scene.