how I use index cards for my writing

An index card with really wonky scribbles

I've taken to using index cards in a way that's very helpful now I'm editing.

On the front of the card I write the major plot points and on the back I write where each important character was seen last in that chapter, or in what chapter another important character was last seen and where.

In this example, A was last seen at home. If she wouldn't appear in chapter 3, my text on that index card would be: A, chapter 2, home.

This way, I can edit a chapter, look at where the characters were at the end of the previous chapter and edit the new chapter accordingly.

It's quite disconcerting how often I lost track of where each character is at one point in time and in these edits I had the main character's kids be at a friend's house in one scene and in the next, they were bored and playing with toys in their room for the whole afternoon.

Both sides of the card are enough information for me to continue the story without losing track of the plot and my characters.