By Kelley Lindberg
1. A list captures thoughts quickly before they escape into the ether. Thoughts are slippery little devils, after all.
2. When you start making a list, word-association becomes a common by-product, leading to creative tangents that sometimes prove to be exactly the thing you were looking for.
3. Writing a list makes you look busy, and when you look busy, no one interrupts you, even if you’re just listing TV shows you wish were still on the air, or vegetables that might taste better breaded and deep fried.
4. No need for transitions.
5. Or backstory…
6. …Although a list can explore elements of backstory without derailing the main story that’s running in your head.
7. Less editing—no one’s going to see your list but you.
8. Unless you post it on your blog.
9. You can try out—and discard—a dozen terrible plot ideas before breakfast, all without wasting a whole chapter (and untold hours) on each one.
10. Lists tell your mind it’s okay to brainstorm, fast and furiously, without having to be logical, practical, or linear. A wild, logic-free brain is where the most creative stuff lives, after all.
11. Lists will sit around quietly and patiently for years, until you’re ready to go back and explore those ideas again. They never sigh loudly and make you feel guilty for taking so long.
12. Creating a list feels exactly like writing—without the pressure of all that writing.