My Google Universe: Google Notebook
Whether you write fiction or non-fiction there is research involved. The sites you travel to create even more links to keep track of. And if your computer ever crashed, you might lose every one of the links you spent so much time gathering.
Enter Google Notebook. Now you can have all your bookmarks saved online, for free. You can give each entry multiple labels, write comments to remind you why you saved them, and organize them in several ways.
You'll set up a "notebook", which is really like a file folder, for anything you collect information on. I have notebooks for writing articles, a notebook for research on a historical novel I'd like to write, and even a notebook for places to visit in New York City.
Within each notebook, I can paste the link to a web page that I want to remember. Each link is called a "note". I can write comments on each note, reminding myself why this particular article or web page was one I wanted to remember. I can also "tag" each note with one or more labels. If I have an article that mentions both queries and proposals, I just give it both labels. Later, if I'm searching for notes on queries, a click on the "query" label will bring up those articles, no matter what notebook they're stored in.
I'm able to sort my notes either by date or by label. If I forgot an important note that I stored last month, but can't remember the label, I'll sort by date. Google Notebook has a search feature, as well.
One of the coolest features is being able to share my notebooks if I choose. Say I have a friend traveling to New York City. Instead of copying and pasting all my links, I can just share the notebook with her via an email message. If she doesn't have a Google account, Google will give her info on how to set one up.
Besides email, there are two other ways of sharing notebooks. I can export the notebook through Google Docs. I can even have my notebook published as a web page and send the link to anyone who wants to see it.
Some links to check out:
Frequently Asked Questions
YouTube Video on how to use Google Notebooks
While you may see news online that Google is discontinuing Google Notebook, they are only discontinuing new development. The product, as is, will continue indefinitely. See the explanation on the Google Notebook Blog.
If you'd like to check out some similar services online, here are seven other possibilities, and another site lists seventeen more.
Google, no matter what your opinion is, has many helpful (and free) applications for writers. Next Wednesday, I'll tell you about another of my favorites. How about you?