Under the Kimono – My Writing Process

A creative person is able to captivate our attention and stoke our sense of wonder by making us think, “how did you create “that” out of nothing?”  We as consumers, only get to see the final piece of art.  The showpiece.  But the true masterpiece is the creative process that a person goes through to create a great piece of work.

This blog will lift the veil behind my writing process and give you a sneak peek into how I structure my most private thoughts.  It will also give you a glimpse of the time and effort it takes to bring a decent blog to your screen.

I hope you enjoy this personally meaningful blog.

Every writer has a favorite place to write.  Stephen King writes in his basement.  Susan Cain, writes in a coffee shop.   I do most of my writing in my home office.  I like to write early in the morning with a fresh cup of coffee.

I like to keep my office clean because it helps me clear my mind and stay focused on the task at hand.  I sit facing a stack of books that have inspired me over the past few years.

Here is what I see when I write.


Most of my writing is done in one of three journals that I own.

**I always use the same pen as well when I write in my journals.


The orange journal contains my “formal” writing practice.  The goal is to write a page a day of decent prose on a variety of topics.  It is in this journal, where many of my published blog ideas originate. 

Here is a peek inside my orange journal.

**You might notice that on the right hand side is the initial draft of a published blog called “Wants Versus Needs.”


My white journal contains raw, unedited, free-form writing.  All this means is that I write about anything that pops into my head and most of the time I do not re-read this material until months later. 

The goal of free-form writing is to get the thoughts out of my head as quickly as possible onto paper.

I was first introduced to this type of writing in Julia Cameron’s book called The Artist’s Way.  Julia refers to this type of writing as Morning Pages.  It’s a way for us to dump our rational and irrational thoughts on paper so we don’t have to keep rethinking the same old thoughts.

Here’s what the inside of my white journal looks like.

**I am trying to re-teach myself cursive writing, so the writing here is really messy


Finally, the black journal is my everyday journal.  I write in this journal things such as:

  • My To-do list
  • Random thoughts
  • Things I am grateful for
  • My learnings
  • My frustrations
  • Quotes that interest me
  • Work related information

In order to maintain some sort of order in my journal, I use the following notations:


This is what my black journal looks like.

Journaling has been a game-changer for me, however, I found that if I only use my journal to track my thoughts and ideas, I lose track of the information.  So I decided to use technology to help me organize and link my thoughts.

Every weekend, I type the content of my black journal into Microsoft OneNote.  This provides me with three benefits:

  1. I have access to this information at any time
  2. I can search information to find similar thought patterns
  3. When I re-type this information into OneNote, I get a second pass at the idea or thought, to help further enhance my learning.

Here is a look at one page of my OneNote

**On the right-hand side you will see the common topics that my thoughts and ideas fall into.

There you have it. Under the Kimono, my entire writing process. 

Did you enjoy this blog? If so, give me a “Absolutely” in the comment section below.