You can never have too many notebooks

Like many writers, I suspect, I have a notebook addiction. (The kind you write in with a pen.) These days there are so many gorgeous ones available — even in common, mass-market, office supply stores. And it’s the inexpensive ones that are the most dangerous… because it seems perfectly acceptable to buy a few more when they’re only $3 each.

Today I went into our local office supply store to buy archive boxes, and left with another four spiral notebooks — which are the kind I prefer, so I can fold the covers right back. Since I already had at least four perfectly good, unused notebooks at home, I have no excuse.

But… NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow, so I can’t be too prepared, can I? If I need a few more notebooks for inspiration, then where’s the harm? You can never have too many notebooks.

Notebooks for writing in are my inspiration of the week. Please share your thoughts if you have a similar affliction — for notebooks or otherwise.

15 comments

  1. My affliction at office supply stores centers around post-its and pens. My life is organized by my iphone and post-its and I’m really super picky about my pens. I would buy more notebooks, but I just pilfer from the kids’ school supplies when I’m in need. 🙂

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    1. Ah yes, pens… that’s definitely a topic for another day 🙂
      As for post-its – I can see the attraction. After all, anything to do with stationery is fairly awesome. But I’m not as susceptible to them — although you’d better hope I never run out of them, because then there’d be trouble!

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  2. I’ve been a die-hard computer person ever since I started writing again in 2009, but lately I’ve been experimenting with notebooks. I started off with a Moleskine just for writing down stray ideas as they come up because I thought the form factor was cool. I decided the build quality could be a little better, so I switched to Leuchtturm 1917 notebooks. They’re pretty similar, but the quality is a touch higher.

    I’m actually using two of them currently. One of them I use as an Idea Journal and the pages are printed in a faint dot grid pattern, which gives me enough guidance to write in straight lines, but doesn’t get in the way if I want to draw rough maps of scene layouts or whatever.

    My other notebook is a Discovery Journal, and that’s where I’ve been doing most of my writing. Basically it’s just a place where I sit down with a vague idea of a scene or story and see what happens. It turns out I now have a couple of what could charitable be called first drafts of short stories, with another in progress.

    I’m not sure if it’s efficient of me to write in notebooks. I always type what I write into a computer file, and while I’m doing it, I wonder if the time it takes me to transcribe stuff would be better spent writing new words instead of copy old ones. But, writing in notebook reminds of of what it was like to write fiction when I was a kid, which is nostalgic and kinda cool. It’s also easy to whip out a notebook when I have time between classes at school. I like to change what color ink I use when starting on a new idea–keeps it whimsical and fun, I guess 🙂

    Plus, there’s something kinda neat and rewarding about flipping through a bunch of notebook pages covered in my writing.

    And wow, what a monster comment I have just created 🙂

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    1. Loving the monster comment!
      I’ve been using a notebook for the past 18 months to brainstorm my current WIP. I’ve used exercise books before, but not quite in the way I’m using one now. Currently, it’s part writing journal, part ideas, part scene planning, and if I wanted to write a scene it would be that too. Am going to experiment with sketch-maps… I don’t seem to do this much, although I do have a family tree somewhere.
      I love the idea of your Discovery Journal. As you say, it’s easy enough to carry a notebook around for the spaces between. I guess that’s where I’m brainstorming ideas — making sure I know what the goals/conflict/story progression are in the next scene I’m going to write.
      As for your fancy notebooks — I long ago worked out that the more schmick a notebook, the less likely I was to want to write in it… my handwriting isn’t particularly neat. Hence I go for cheap and practical (and colourful if possible).

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  3. I buy journals–expensive ones with suede covers or fancy clasps and buckles. Unfortunately, they’re so pretty that I don’t want to mess up the pages with writing. Dumb, huh?

    My true addiction, though, is Post-Its. I looooove me some Post-Its. I probably have nearly every color and size made, even black and aubergine (both of which look stunning with silver gel-tip ink, BTW). 😉

    Like Tami, I’m particular about pens–black ink, medium to heavy point, and a cushy grip.

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    1. I’m always attracted to the fancy journals, but never buy them for exactly the reason you’re stating… I also really need a spiral binding, so I can open them properly and fold the opposite page back if I want.

      Another vote for post-its! I’m going to have to be more observant. Maybe there are some amazing post-its out there just waiting for me to become addicted 🙂

      I prefer writing in blue ink, although I’ll happily write in black. I’ll definitely do a post about pens someday I think. I’m a bit susceptible to them too! Although my focus tends to be less on the nib and more on the casing…

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  4. Darn it! I accidentally went to Officeworks and bought two journals. I keep my notebook habit in check by avoiding lined ones. If they’re lined I won’t use them, but if they’re blank I’ll use them as sketchbooks and visual diaries.

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    1. ‘Accidently’?! Yeah, right… 🙂
      I guess we all have our little strategies for curbing our addictions.
      On the subject of sketching, I don’t seem to do that much. I think I’m missing out. Must give it a shot for street maps and clothes etc. Not that I can draw to save myself. (Unlike you, Trudi!)

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  5. I came to this post from the inlovewithjournals blog, and I totally feel you on this. I LOVE those ninja notebooks. I probably have far more notebooks pens and paper than I could ever use, but the fun is in trying to fill them, right?

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