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Bullet Journaling for Writers: 5 Steps to Start Today

Jackie Pearce

To become a full-time freelance writer, you are going to need to keep track of many, many moving parts.

You will have clients, ideas, stories, things you’re learning, things you’re trying, word trackers, pitching trackers, and more.

Diving into bullet journaling for writers can be a great way for you to manage all of those moving parts.

This is why you should learn how to use one. In this article, we will cover all the basics you need to know, how to set it up, and things you could track as a writer.

Bullet Journaling for Writers – An Overview

Becoming a full-time or even part-time freelance writer requires you to keep tabs on an endless amount of moving parts. You will often need to manage your thoughts and your ongoing tasks.

This is where bullet journaling can be your saving grace. It is a creative and flexible system that not only enhances productivity but also can help you understand your own creative process even better than before.

Yes, there are endless options when it comes to productivity software and things like that, but there is so much benefit from putting pen to paper and managing it all the old-fashioned way.

What Is Bullet Journaling?

Bullet Journaling, commonly known as BuJo, is a customizable organizational system designed to help individuals track their past, organize their present, and plan for the future. Originating as a simple note-taking method, it has evolved into a powerful tool embraced by various professionals, including writers.

Setting up a Bullet Journal for writing doesn’t require artistic prowess or extensive preparation. A blank notebook, a pen, and a willingness to experiment are all you need.

Begin with an index or table of contents, setting aside dedicated sections for brainstorming, plotting, character development, and more.

The Key Elements Of Bullet Journaling

  1. Rapid Logging: The core of Bullet Journaling lies in rapid logging – a quick and efficient way to jot down ideas, tasks, and notes. For fiction writers, this means capturing fleeting thoughts, story concepts, and character traits on the go. For freelance writers, it could mean potential clients, leads, assignments, and more.
  2. Collections: Create specialized collections within your Bullet Journal to house specific writing-related content. This could include your current assignments, due dates, article ideas, publications you are pursuing, and more.
  3. Migration: Regularly review and migrate tasks and ideas to ensure nothing is forgotten. As a writer, this process is invaluable for keeping track of ongoing projects, revising drafts, and planning future works.
  4. Monthly and Weekly Spreads: Use monthly and weekly spreads to map out writing goals, deadlines, and milestones. This provides a bird’s eye view of your writing journey and helps you allocate time effectively.
  5. Trackers: Integrate trackers to monitor writing habits, word counts, and reading progress. Visualizing your achievements can be a powerful motivator and assist in maintaining a consistent writing routine.

Benefits of Bullet Journaling for Writers

Enhanced Productivity

The structured nature of Bullet Journaling ensures that no idea slips through the cracks. It provides a clear roadmap for your writing journey, making it easier to meet deadlines and accomplish goals.

Creative Exploration

The free-form nature of Bullet Journaling allows writers to explore ideas and concepts without constraints. Doodling, mind maps, and creative layouts can spark inspiration and lead to unexpected breakthroughs in your writing.

Personalized Planning

Tailor your Bullet Journal to suit your unique writing process. Whether you’re a meticulous planner or a spontaneous creator, the flexibility of the system allows for a personalized approach that aligns with your preferences.

Mindful Reflection

Regular reflection through the Bullet Journaling process fosters mindfulness about your writing journey. It encourages self-awareness, helping you identify patterns, overcome challenges, and celebrate accomplishments.

Story Idea and Inspiration Generator

    Transform your Bullet Journal into a story idea generator by dedicating a section to prompts, snippets, and random thoughts. Whenever inspiration strikes, jot it down. Over time, this collection becomes a goldmine of ideas, ensuring you’re never at a loss for your next writing project.

    Character Development Spread

    Craft compelling characters by creating dedicated spreads for each character in your story. Include details like personality traits, backstory, and even visual references. Visualizing your characters in this way can bring them to life on the page, making them more authentic and relatable to your readers.

    Word Sprints Tracker

    For writers who thrive on word sprints, use your Bullet Journal to track your progress during these focused writing sessions. Note the date, time, and word count achieved in each sprint. This not only motivates you to improve with each session but also provides insight into your most productive writing periods.

    Research Repository

    Build a repository for research notes and references. Whether you’re delving into historical fiction, sci-fi, or fantasy, having a dedicated space to organize your research helps you seamlessly weave accurate and rich details into your narrative.

    Submission Tracker

    Navigate the world of submissions with a dedicated tracker. Keep tabs on where you’ve submitted your work, response times, and any feedback received. This not only helps you stay organized but also provides insights into the submission process, aiding in refining your approach.

    Reading Log and Reviews

    Expand your Bullet Journal into a reading log and review journal. Document the books you read, jot down your thoughts, and rate them. This not only serves as a delightful reading diary but can also offer valuable insights into different writing styles and genres.

    Inspiration Collage

    Create an inspiration collage by incorporating visual elements into your Bullet Journal. Collect images, quotes, and snippets that resonate with your current project. Flipping through these pages can reignite your creative spark when you’re in need of a burst of inspiration.

    Writing Rituals and Habits

    Explore and cultivate your writing rituals and habits by dedicating a section to your daily routines. Note down the time of day you feel most productive, any pre-writing rituals, or habits that contribute to your creative flow. This self-awareness can optimize your writing process for peak performance.

    Revision Roadmap

    Develop a revision roadmap by breaking down the editing process into manageable steps. Create a checklist for each revision stage, from the first draft to the final polish. This systematic approach ensures a thorough and organized revision process.


    Incorporating these unique ideas into your Bullet Journaling practice can elevate your writing experience to new heights. By transforming your journal into a versatile tool that aligns with your creative process, you not only stay organized but also foster a deeper connection with your craft.

    The Bullet Journal becomes not just a planner but a creative companion, guiding you through the twists and turns of your writing journey. So, customize your journal, experiment with different layouts, and watch as your creativity unfolds on the pages of your Bullet Journal.

    In the world of writers, where creativity and organization collide, Bullet Journaling emerges as a versatile and empowering ally. By adopting this system, writers can navigate the intricate landscape of their creative minds with purpose and efficiency.

    Ready To Build Your Writing Career?

    If you have your bullet journal set up and ready to go, you probably want to make sure you are building a career that can withstand any things you throw at your career.

    No matter what happens in the world, you can still build a profitable, solid career. Get the recession-proof ebook to build a great writing career:

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