Sometimes organizing your ideas for writing is as difficult as putting them down on paper. Some like to set down an outline of ideas organized by theme, topic or chronology, but sometimes the collection of ideas doesn’t fall into a suitable organization well or right away…
Most are familiar with the process of mind mapping, getting ideas out of your brain and into a map of connected ideas. Mind mapping helps to see connections that might not be obvious at first. The reason mind mapping can be so useful is that there are very few rules to how you can organize your ideas…
Some key characteristics of mind mapping are illustrated below (taken from http://www.mindmapping.com):
The five essential characteristics of Mind Mapping:
- The main idea, subject or focus is crystallized in a central image.
- The main themes radiate from the central image as ‘branches’.
- The branches comprise a key image or key word drawn or printed on its associated line.
- Topics of lesser importance are represented as ‘twigs’ of the relevant branch.
- The branches form a connected nodal structure.
When preparing to write, online mind mapping tools can be particularly helpful and easy to use.
Consider trying out a few the next time you need to iron out a new organization for a piece you have to write. Don’t forget, writing assignments such as mind mapping can also be a group activity with other collaborators helping to suggest new ideas and connections in each other’s maps.
http://www.inspiration.com/inspiration (Click on map view for a short video on mind mapping)