Current Notebooks (general edition)

general use notebooks

I use a lot of notebooks. A lot. That’s not counting sticky notes or legal pads. Most of the time, I don’t know how many I have in active use as some go through resting periods between uses, but here’s a peek at the current bunch of notebooks for everyday use.

The pink book, with gridded paper, is by Markings, my all purpose notebook, which lives in my purse and gets pretty much everything. Freewriting to get my brain started/cleared in the morning, to-do lists, notes to self and snippets of story to transcribe later. Since everything goes in there, I use colored pens, highlighters and bullet points to keep different subjects separate. There’s a pocket in the back that holds reciepts, interesting ephemera I find in the wild and sticky notes.

“To Blossom You Must Grow” book is by GreenDesignWorks, has white lined paper (I prefer cream, but I love the cover art.) This is dedicated to a fpurely for play writing project and area of study. Every writing session gets a different color of ink, so that even if I forget to date an entry, I can figure it out.

Kraft Moleskine also has gridded paper, and is my overflow book, in case I don’t want to carry the bigger book with me. I definitely plan to try a gridded hardcover Moleskine at some point, but I like the cahier format very much. The cover is only plain because I haven’t altered it yet.

Small green planner is by PaperBlanks, which I like a lot more than I thought I would. I’m still getting the hang of using this particular planner but I do want to try a PaperBlanks notebook in the near future.

Small kraft Moleskine with altered cover is theoretically my pocket notebook, though lately I’ve found the smaller size to feel too cramped. It has lined pages, and serves the same purpose as my larger kraft Moleskine, but on a smaller level.

These books are the workhorses, the ones that catch my brain droppings and keep me company in line, at the laundromat, waiting for friends etc. I’ve found that the more I use notebooks, the more I want to write, period. Maybe there’s something elemental in the touch of pen to paper, but it connects my brain to the page, and I count that a good thing.


i1035 FW1.1

I love notebooks. Oversized, mini sized, desk size, pocket size, hardcover, softcover, lined, plain, gridded (my new favorite) – all are good. I’m not a Moleskine purist, as there are lots of other good makers, but I do have a soft spot for them. I love notebooks in general, so babbling about them here feels natural.

No, these were not all purchased at the same time, and yes, they will all get used, each for its own purpose. I find there’s something in paper and pen that a computer can’t provide. I do write fiction longhand, as well as freewriting, which I also term “bloodletting,” dumping whatever is in my head onto the page until my brain has taken care of that business. When writing the rough-rough draft of a story, it comes more naturally to me with pen on paper than fingers on keys, so I am learning to trust myself and do what comes natural. Sometimes, that’s scary, but onward I go. Doesn’t have to be perfect, only has to be.

I used to be a purist about lined pages and nothing else, but after I tried my first gridded notebook, by Markings (will share Markings books in another post) it was love, pure and deep, so gridded pages are now my preference. I’m trying to figure out how I can best use plain pages, but so far, the blankness baffles me, and the unblemished page is lovely and pristine, but I’m not ready to give up on that format yet. Any plain-page fans have any tips?

Next up: a peek inside