As some of you may know by now, the Starz pirate series "Black Sails" has come to an end. It was one of my favorite programs and I spent some time, while watching it, writing down some of their terms and phrases into a blank book that had an old world map for a cover. Phrase books are a great way to note and study certain phrases one might hear or read about that can help a writer bring a scene to life.
In many cases, the phrase or words might be general, but not readily convenient when a writer is busy writing. In other cases, it might be a matter of not having the proper training for a situation like the jargon one learns when they join a branch of the military. Or what about the kind of words you may learn in a foreign land? Though the Brits speak English, it's not the English I grew up with in the states.
Since I was never a pirate and never been on a pirate ship, a pirate phrase book helped me recall phrases I hear and read in movies, books and online glossaries. Once jotted down into my phrase book, it stayed on the desk to help me out whenever I got stuck and needed to find just the write word I needed. Consider something like this to help you in your writing. It doesn't have to been about pirates, of course. Make a phrase book that will go with your style and genre that suits you. It doesn't have to be a fancy book either.
Naturally, once I was done writing my trilogy, I thought about what to do with my pirate phrase book and decided to decorate it. Here are a few images of the way I changed the entire book that I hope and plan to use again one day in my future writings.