12 Things Every Writer Should Store in The Writing Vault

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Saving for a
rainy day isn’t just good financial advice—it’s good writing advice. We all
have those times when inspiration doesn’t choose to shine on us. But if we’ve
been storing valuable things, we’ll be able to continue to make progress.
1. Ideas. Every single writer should have a system
of keeping track of ideas. I have several.
  • I always
    have a file on my computer for blog post ideas. Any time I’m at my computer and
    come up with a good idea, I open that document and record it. If I come across
    a cool idea on the web, I paste the URL and a quick description of what I think
    I could write about.
  • I also
    have a documents for book ideas, guest post ideas, short stories, really
    anything I could write about. And I keep them separate and well labeled so I
    can find them when the idea file runs dry.
  • I have a
    place on my iPad where I can record ideas.
  • I have a
    place on my phone where I can keep ideas.
  • Finally,
    incase electronics fail me. I always carry a small notebook in my purse. The
    trick here is to remember to transfer those ideas to my other files so I don’t
    lose them!  

2. Writing
Instruction Books.
When I
get stumped on how to do something or what should come next, I have a large
library with physical books. In addition, I also have quite a few ebooks (some
duplicates) so that when I’m away from home I still have access to what I’ll
need.
3. Writing
Prompt Books & Websites.

I’m a big believer in writing prompts. Sometimes we need something to stretch
our writing muscles before we can dig deep. That’s what writing prompts do for
me.
4. Writing
Friends.
I’ve been
careful to develop friendships with other writers over the years. These men and
women are some of my most valuable resources. With them I can share my
struggles, my fears, and my successes. I can also bounce ideas around with them
and spend valuable brainstorming time when I get stuck.
5. Years of
Classes and Workshops.
Well,
I may not have the actual classes, but I have the knowledge that has come from
them. I also have my notes and often times, the recordings of the classes I’ve
taken. If you’re not investing in writing classes, you’re missing out on a
valuable asset.
6. Favorite
Books.
These are the
books that have inspired me, humbled me, and challenged me to grow as a writer.
They include poetry, novels, biographies, non-fiction, even beautiful books of
photography. All of these make up a valuable source of inspiration.
7. Favorite
Movies.
We are becoming a
more and more visual society. And there are movies that have inspired me as
well as books.
8. Places of
Peace and Rest.
Where do
you go to find peace? Don’t neglect going there regularly. Or, if it’s not
possible, surround yourself with images that bring that place to mind.
9. Good
Equipment.
I can’t tell
you the difference it makes to have good equipment. From the computer you use,
to the word processing program, to the desk equipment. This isn’t a place to
skimp or try to make do.
10.
Inspirational Music.
This
isn’t necessarily religious music, it’s anything that inspires you. Put
together a playlist on Spotify and keep it on in the background while you’re
writing.
11.
Alligator-tough Skin.
Writing
isn’t for the faint-of-heart. We must endure rejection, revision and those
horrible voices that live in every writer’s mind.
12. Faith. I think this one is the most important
thing of all. For me, it goes beyond faith in myself, although that is
important. My faith in the God who created me for the purpose of stringing
words together is my foundation every single time I sit down to write.

These are the
things that I keep in my writer’s vault. I’d love to know what’s in yours.
Edie Melson is the author of numerous books, as well as a freelance writer and editor. Her blog, The Write Conversation, reaches thousands each month. She’s the co-director of the Blue Ridge Mountains ChristianWriters Conference and the Social Media Mentor at My Book Therapy. She’s also the Military Family Blogger at Guideposts. Com, Social Media Director for SouthernWriters Magazine and the Senior Editor for NovelRocket.com. Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook. Don’t miss her new book from Worthy Inspired, coming in May WHILE MY SOLDIER SERVES.