Case study: simplify your creative workflow with RealtimeBoard

A lot of us are looking for the ways to be more productive, more focused on our creative workflow. And we are happy people as there are a lot of tools to help us with that – from pen and paper to complex time management and project management systems. If to-do lists are not enough for your creative mind and you want to go digital, you can easily use RealtimeBoard endless whiteboard to organize your ideas, stories, thought and whatever you need. One of our users, Shayla, told us how she manages the creative workflow.

Hi Shayla, what projects are you working on?

I’ve got two different projects going at the same time. Both will end up as novels, if everything goes according to the plan. The first is a medieval fantasy, focused around a group of rogue soldiers on a quest to defeat a group of dark wizards, whose ultimate goals are to raise their own personal army and assume world dominance. Although the original concept was my idea, I have a very devoted friend who enjoys working with me to seal plot holes and further character development, as well as contribute ideas of their own.

The second is a sort of steampunk fantasy genre, revolving around a team of heroes to defeat a military dictatorship overseen by an evil dragon, after the overseer of the more ‘peaceful’ faction was assassinated. The original idea for this one was a collaborative “spitball” between myself and my cousin, and we’ve been working together to further it for quite a while now.

What is your biggest challenge in managing creative workflow?

The biggest challenge would definitely have to be finding times that work, where I can just sit down and be productive. The downside to an internet-based board like RealtimeBoard is that I’m just a touch of exasperation away from opening up Reddit, or checking my email–something that has nothing to do with my work. If both I and my partner are not 100% motivated, it’s easy to get distracted; but that isn’t at the fault of the site of course:)

What is the workflow? How do you work together on the projects?

The workflow is, amazingly, simple. We can jot down anything that comes to our mind, anywhere on the board, and then work together to figure out where it ought to go. Most of the time, a small idea like “What if Character X is really sensitive about ___?” can snowball into something much larger, and forge events where Character X learns to trust so-and-so about their issue, or learns to accept their issue and become confident instead of insecure. It opens keys to backstories, childhood events– even future events (“What if Character X’s ___ issue costs them a fight and sets the whole group back?”)! All that needs to be done is drawing a few arrows to link the ideas, and we can arrange them accordingly– even edit other parts of the story to accommodate them.

Online whiteboard for managing creative workflow

How do you use RealtimeBoard for managing creative workflow?

I use RealtimeBoard as, essentially, a gigantic storyboard. I rearrange different areas to accommodate my particular way of thinking for that day; if I’m feeling character development, I can push timelines and plot charts to the side, and vice versa. I get to visually organize my thoughts, which is an invaluable skill that most people don’t realize.

What was the process of managing creative workflow before and what has changed?

My process beforehand was excruciating, to be blunt. Notebook after notebook was filled with out-of-place information, facts, research, and hard-to-follow trains of thought; and heaven forbid you lost one of those pocket-sized notepads filled with everything you’d jotted down over the past week or so. RTB made it so much easier to just write it out in my phone, and copy and paste it straight onto the board later.

I get to visually organize my thoughts,

What advice could you give to our users? Maybe some productivity tips or smth like that?

The best advice I can give is to experiment. Every person has a different purpose for using RealtimeBoard, and everyone has a different mind. My neat, box-filled world might overwhelm you. Your cluttered, arrow-filled world might overwhelm me.

The site has so many different features, and it’s unlikely that you won’t find one that works for you.

If you’re having trouble being productive, or forcing out your creative bursts, there are a lot of different things you can try. Some people are able to overcome it by forcing out at least a few words a day. Some people leave off mid-thought to give themselves a place to come back to. Some just wait until they’re “feeling it”. All I can say for sure is that RealtimeBoard will definitely help you visualize your thoughts. Whether that’s something you need or not, it can help a lot of people understand what you’re trying to convey.

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