Keeping a Notebook

I am an aficionado of notebooks. In addition to my big Lee-Valley Everyman’s Journal, which I write in at home, every morning, I carry around a smaller notebook that fits in whatever bag I’m using. I like leather-bound, smaller notebooks that fit in a purse; but lately I’ve been using plain old composition books, a stack of which I bought last year for $1 each.

These smaller notebooks are for poems, ostensibly — I started the practice back in my “one bad poem” phase (which lasted for 5 years) — but I also scribble character sketches and quotes and reminders in them. I write down reading recommendations, and I write down scraps from books I’m reading (Someone by Alice McDermott; The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson [again]).

Here’s an unattributed quote that found its way in just the other day:


List items: Send Mary Oliver poem to Therese; Xarelto lawsuit?; Kristin Neff, on-line guided meditations; pachad, yirah — two kinds of fear (courtesy Tara Mohr); big new (?) ferryboat Tokitae, not usually on this run; call K.M.; find Kahlil Gibran‘s poem, “Your Children Are Not Your Children”; write a blog post about C.D.’s “Lick Your Rats” discussion (lecture?).

Since the first of the year, I have been attempting to write 200 words a day on my new novel (vs. the old one which is at the editing stage) and I’ve filled up this occasional notebook pretty fast. I’m just about to retire it, so I thought I’d go through it to see what I’d left undone. And then I thought I’d share it with you.

It’s good to be portable. What’s your notebook?



2 replies
  1. Carolynne Harris
    Carolynne Harris says:

    My notebooks lately are Artists books because I’ve been making collages among the writings and I need thicker paper for gluing, I love rubber cement. Otherwise they are journals from TJ Max or wherever I find cheap pretty ones. “Lick your rate” What on earth? is that a teenage CD or what?


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