What medium do you use to write? A computer? A typewriter? Pen and paper? Pen and a notebook? Today, I want to explore ten advantages of using a notebook for writing.

National Blog Posting Month, NanoPoblano, NaBloPoMo, 2015I have a growing collection of Moleskin notebooks, which you might know have smooth paper and are lovely to write on, especially with a good fountain pen. Even if my notebooks are fancy, my pen isn’t it is a simple Parker pen that I got for about 10€ in a super market.

So what are the advantages for using a notebook?

  1. What you write cannot be deleted it will stay on the page. You will have to put effort into erasing things, using an ink eraser is not fun, white out or other things aren’t cool either, you’ll very likely just cross out what you wrote. And crumpling up notebook pages is a no no. So if you wrote something you weren’t happy about due to x or y reasons but after a good night’s sleep you think it was good, well then it isn’t lost. Nor can a notebook’s hard drive die on you. Software updates won’t impact you. And if you forget to hit save, it will be saved anyways.
  2. If you are like me, then writing in a notebook will enable you to write really really quickly. I write in cursive at a very high speed, at university I never took my notes on a computer, that would have just slowed me down, and when you are studying then handwriting helps the memorisation process, so take notes by hand.
  3. Any idea that goes through your head can just be jotted down anywhere you are. No need to press a button.
  4. In case you have no power you can still write. Power outages happen everywhere, yes even in Paris… And imagine on an airplane, you are always told to turn off your electronic equipment, no one ever tells you to store away your notebook, so if your characters are in transmission mode, it might be best to be equipped with a notebook.
  5. No social media distraction. Now come on! Everyone who writes gets distracted by things happening on the computer, twitter, Facebook, blogs, news… With a notebook you can cut yourself off from distractions linked to modern technology without needing too much self-discipline.
  6. Anything you write will be first draft. So if you type it up you’ll automatically work through it again.
  7. You won’t lose paper. This is an advantage of using a notebook over just loose paper. How often has it happened that something was written down on a piece of paper and then the paper went missing? A notebook is nicely bound…
  8. Looking through old notebooks can a be a lot of fun. Who looks through old files on their computer? It might even bring back memories and spike new burst of creativity.
  9. You will not be preoccupied by the word count. No notebook that I know of counts your words automatically…
  10. People who observe you will take you for a writer. Some might even approach you and ask you. Writing in a notebook in a public space is socially acceptable, you have an artistic vibe around you and are not excluding yourself by hiding behind a screen.

Come back next week to find out about the disadvantages I have come across when it comes to writing in a notebook.


© Solveig Werner 2015. All rights reserved.

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35 thoughts on “10 reasons why writing in a notebook is great

  1. Great post, Solveig. I use a combination of notebooks and computer. I also journal, which I always do in a separate notebook.
    How do you keep track of all your notebooks? I have a problem with that and I don’t know how to solve it. I need some creative storage solutions.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Ula, keeping track of them is definitely a problem. I am currently rediscovering the contents of some old notebooks. I have at least one missing and know for sure that I stupidly threw one out in the past (I hope that it weren’t more…).

      Liked by 1 person

    1. That comment was not meant to post just yet, can you tell?
      My notebooks are usually rather messy as all of the things you have mentioned are mixed together with stories and things such as schedules or to do lists.
      I have not seen riffle paper copy yet, I shall remedy that promptly…
      Thank you Ella.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post! I actually find the opposite of one of your points though – I hand write much slower than I type, so what I end up using my notebooks for is writing out trickier scenes. Because I’m writing slower, it gives me more of a chance to think about how I’m going to phrase it/what will happen next, as opposed to typing where it’s a bit of a brain dump! I look forward to seeing your next post about this 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Charlotte, I actually type rather quickly too, but the flow in writing seems to be more present when I write by hand. I do guess the brain wires itself differently if it is written by hand or typed… It will be up next Sunday 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I actually did lose an entire novel that was written in two notebooks. 😛 But apart from that the one thing I really have to agree is a plus is the lack of internet access! Such a procrastination tool!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t use notebooks because I can’t understand my own writing! It’s very frustrating at times. I’ve started using the notes section on my iPhone instead. Yes it can run out of battery but I always make sure it’s fully charged up before leaving the house.

    I’m looking forward to reading your post about the disadvantages of using a notebook. I wonder if not being able to understand your own handwriting will feature? 🤔

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can imagine that being frustrating. I do use the notes section on my iPhone but I prefer writing. Maybe a portable charger would be a good idea that way you’ll be sure that you won’t run out of battery at all 🙂
      I am rather lucky I can read my own handwriting even though no one else can, it’s like writing in code…

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Mmm I guess you are right. Here in Paris you can now charge your phone at the bus stops they have a USB socket. Maybe the town planning people should read the truth app…

          Liked by 1 person

            1. I don’t know. I have heard that public use sockets can be dangerous. So far I have not made use of this new “service”, but if I run out of power and don’t have my notebook and want to write, then this might be a good idea…

              Liked by 1 person

  5. I like your list 🙂

    Like you, I’m a big fan of ink and paper. It is easier for me to ‘blue sky’ (or brainstorm) on paper. My thinking behaviour is very different with a pen vs a keyboard.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I am notebook mad and I wrote a blog about them recently. I hadn’t thought of your last reason – writing in public and being seen as a writer! Nice one. Although once I was writing at the railway station and two men accounted me and quite nastily said I was being pretentious etc – although I walked away the incident remained with me for a long time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I once was approached by a woman who thought that I was a writer because she had seen me writing in a notebook, at the time i did not see myself as one…
      Thank you, I will have to check out your post.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I realised it might be a bit tricky to find so I just checked and it is the first one in June and called ‘Sacks and Notebooks’ – about Oliver Sacks and his notebook addiction and notebooks in general.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. I prefer Leuchturm notebooks myself and I have loads of fountain pens with different coloured inks for the entertainment value. I also use fountain pens at work, so my fingers are always stained.

    There is nothing quite like approaching a blank sheet of paper with a fountain pen in your hand for making the imagination race.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do enjoy using stabilo pens, especially the Turquoise one I have, sometimes a bit of colour when writing does a massive change in mood…
      I’ll have to look into Leuchturm notebooks, but I have a big stash of to be filled Moleskins that I’ll work my way through first.
      Fountain pens are so good for writing speed I do agree with that.

      Liked by 1 person

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