The Writer’s Best Friend
by Jude Goodwin, Canadian Poet
Today I was rummaging through the garage and found a box labelled ‘scrap writing’. Inside was a stack of old journals – spiral bound, stapled, decorated and plain. And yeah – a whole bunch of scrap writing. I’m actually going to toss all of these – but not without acknowledging the huge part they play in my writing.
As the quotes above advises, write every day. And to do this, you’ll probably need more than your official writing devices – your laptop or computer. I have an assortment of journals all over the house – by my bed, by my desk, near the big chair in the living room. At any time I can grab one and write random thoughts, or read random thoughts. And because they’re close, there’s no excuse not to write, even if only for a few moments.
My daughter Yvonne is a great inspiration. At 16 years, she declared she was going to write a novel in November. It actually took her a full year to complete that first novel, but she wrote every day. And 6 years later, she still does. We took a trip to Washington DC a few years back and at the end of every day she took time to write. No matter how tired we were from walking through museums!
Yvonne writes on her laptop but she also carries, at all times, an ongoing journal. It’s where she writes, records her life, draws, takes notes at school, pastes flowers and photos and napkins, paints – these journals (and there are many now) are amazing works of art. You can see pages from them on Yvonne’s Tumblr and the image at the top of the page is from her masthead. https://improving-slowly.tumblr.com/
Yvonne and I spend a lot of time in the journal section of book stores and art shops. A nice journal, one that fits well in your hands, that isn’t too daunting (the really fancy ones put me off a bit – I don’t want to ruin them with my scrap writing!), or too expensive – is a treasure to find and extol over.
The following journal products can be found at Garibaldi Graphics.
Moleskine is our favourite
Moleskine is an Italian manufacturer, papermaker and product designer founded in 1997 by Maria Sebregondi, based in Milan, Italy. It produces and designs luxury notebooks, and also includes planners, journals, sketchbooks, leather backpacks, wallets and various accessories and stationery. Moleskine’s notebooks are stylised to follow the aesthetics of a ‘traditional’ black notebook with rounded corners and ivory-coloured paper. They are bound in cardboard with a sewn spine that allows the notebook to lie flat. An elastic band is used to seal, and a ribbon bookmark is included along with an expandable pocket inside the rear cover which is packed in a paper banderole.
Rhodia, the French Orange Notebooks with a Cult Following
I was thrilled to discover Rhodia notebooks in a little shop in Washington DC. These economical pads are a favorite of artists, designers, calligraphers, crafters and writers. People love Rhodia pads for their grids, smooth paper and unique scored cover which folds back neatly. The stiff back cover makes writing easy and portable. All Rhodia paper is acid-free and ink-friendly. Their bright orange covers make them instantly recognizable in the store or on the street. Rhodia has been around since the 1930s. And of course, these days you can find Rhodia notebooks with different colours as well. Never write in a dull notebook again. Use Rhodia.
The ZAP Book
A nice chunky notebook that you can carry around everywhere. Made of 100% recycled paper and comes in as a 1/2 ZAP Book if you want something more pocketable. 160 or 80 sheets of recycled paper, comes in glued and wire bound versions.