Having the Right Tools When Creativity Strikes

I never know when a new idea is going to hit me.

Anna Burgess Yang
4 min readMay 14, 2021


Image created via Midjourney

I have long since learned that ideas will strike me out of the blue. Whether it is my next blog article, something for work, or an item for my never-ending to-do list, my brain will sometimes turn at the most inconvenient times.

Over the years, I’ve learned that there isn’t a “single way” to keep track of everything. It depends on the type of idea and sometimes the location. I have gotten good at breaking down what tools to use and when so that I can collect my thoughts, keep them somewhat organized, and know where to turn when I need to retrieve that idea later.

1. New Blog Post or Article Ideas

I could be doing anything from reading an article online to cooking dinner when I am hit with a new idea for a blog post or article. Whether it be for my personal blog or for a client, I realize that I need to capture the idea before it disappears — otherwise there’s about zero percent chance that I’ll remember it later.

I use Trello to quickly type out article ideas. I have different boards for different types of content or publication locations. I’ll capture my thoughts with a rough title and a brief description. (This post came from a Trello card that I added a few weeks ago!)

2. Notes On-the-Go

I’m something of an obsessive note-taker. I take notes during meetings in a notebook that permanently resides on my desk, but also capture lines write down lines of inspiration when I’m out in the world. Maybe I’m sitting in a webinar and the speaker says a line that is inspiring or I’m walking down the street and see a high-heeled shoe on the median and wonder how it got there (which happened to me the other day).

When I’m out and about, I use a shoulder bag and in it, I carry a small notebook and pen. I’ll quickly jot down lines as they come to me. Most often, these aren’t notes that I revisit later, but I always think it’s important to write things down as they strike me.

3. Finding the Right Words

Sometimes I will be noodling on an intro or a conclusion and BAM — the right words will hit me. At a…



Anna Burgess Yang

Productivity geek + solopreneur with niche expertise. #5amwritersclub frequent flyer. • https://start.annabyang.com/