Journal Writing
Charlotte Rains Dixon  

Favorite Writing Journals (C’mon, You Know You Want One)

JournalsJournals.  Oh, God, journals.  In the recent purge of much of my office crap, I gave away a ton of them.  And yet I still have tons of them (note photo.  And I’m pretty sure I’ve got at least another box and another bag of them somewhere upstairs).  But that’s because I love them so much that I hoard them.  And then when I go looking for just the right journal for what I need (because I start journals for everything) I usually decide nothing I have works right and I go buy one.  That’s probably the exact definition of a hoarder.  But if I had a house piled full of journals, the way those people on the hoarding shows have piles of junk, I’d be a happy woman.

Anyway.  It is only a few days until the new year and I need you need a new journal.   So I thought I’d share with you some of my favorites.  And do bear in mind, this is only a partial list.   I can fall in love with the simplest notebook at my local Fred Meyer, or buy bunches of pretty ones in France and forget that I had recently vowed lifelong allegiance to a certain brand.  I’m fickle that way and I blame it on my right brain.

But if I were going to vow lifelong allegiance to a certain brand, it would likely be one of these:

  1. The Moleskine.   We’re all familiar with these by now, as they are the journals that famous writers such as Hemingway supposedly used.  Originally available only in black with a hard cover, they now come in a million different sizes and cover colors.   I like the classic best.  The paper quality is good, and there’s that handy pocket in the back. Hard to beat.
  2. Leuchtturm Journals.  These were love at first sight for me.  Very similar to Moleskines, but they have…wait for it…numbered pages and an index.  The best features ever!  Because ever since I discovered the Bullet Journal system (see below) I number the pages of all my journals and keep an ongoing index.  Its the only way to track your ideas and brilliant thoughts.  The Leuchtturm does this for you.  And the colors–oh the colors! They’ve got Moleskines way beat on the colors.
  3. Bullet Journal.  The inventor of this system is a brilliant graphic designer who figured out a way to personalize his Moleskine to make it into a truly handy organizer, adaptable to anyone.  You can use any notebook you want for it, but now he also has a store where you can buy one designed especially for this system.  When I first learned of the bullet journal a couple years ago, I used it quite successfully for a year.  Then, in my usual fickle manner, I moved on.  But I’ve maintained some of his innovations.  And I’m sorely tempted to buy one of his journals to check them out.
  4. Plain old-fashioned spirals.  You know, the kind you buy at office supply stores with little kitties or butterflies on them.  I’ve got stacks of these babies lying around, and sometimes they just can’t be beat for practicality.  You can’t go wrong with notebooks from Mead (including their Red & Black brand, which I like a lot) but lookit all the cool ones I found on Etsy, too!
  5. Rhodia. Oh God. I just went to their website.  They’ve branched out from the classic (or “iconic” as they call it) orange and black notebooks.  There are all kinds of goodies to consider here.
  6. Claire Fontaine.  Another classic manufacturer of quality notebooks.  And I love the way they look.

Okay, so those are my picks.  Do you have a habit for collecting journals like I do? What are your favorites?  Please share in the comments.

0 thoughts on “Favorite Writing Journals (C’mon, You Know You Want One)

  1. NancyFox

    I am finding more and more in common with you all the time! You are feeding my addiction with this list (refuse to call it hoarding even though someone I live with definitely would!)

    Now we need to pick a date for a collaboration meeting so our own can be on the list before the 2016 holiday shopping season.

    Happy New Year!

    1. Charlotte Rains dixon

      Ha! I love finding fellow addictees, if that is a word. And in this case, I refuse to believe that my addiction is bad. Also, yes, yes, yes to getting together soon to plan and scheme. Let’s set a date via email.

  2. Elisabeth Friedman

    Sharing your journal addiction (and feeling relieved that I am not as crazy as I was afraid I might be), I have to add two to your list. I love journaling/writing with Levenger’s Circa notebooks and have customized a few of them to track birding and other hobbies (the plastic covers are perfect for adding stickers). After many other (expensive) experiments, I have also settled into using their weekly planner. However, for just plain writing joy, I fell in love with the paper in the Traveler’s Notebook…and maybe with the cover, too. ?

    1. Charlotte Rains dixon

      Ooh, wonderful suggestions. I will admit to a flirtation with the Circa system, so I’m glad you reminded us–and I love the idea of adding stickers to the plastic covers. And, okay, I will have to check out the Traveler’s notebook–is that Levenger also? Paper makes such a huge difference! My current favorite pens tend to bleed through the cheap paper, making it impossible to write on both sides, which I dislike. Thanks for joining in!

      1. Elisabeth Friedman

        Traveler’s Notebooks are made by a Japanese firm called Midori. I have had the best luck finding their components on Amazon. Pinterest and YouTube have lots of entries on using them. Happy writing!

  3. Charlotte Rains dixon

    Okay, we are monkeying with comments here–and as far as I can tell, the feature enabling people to reply to each other is now gone. I-yi-yi. Anyway, i wanted to thank Elizabeth for letting me know where to find those Traveler’s journals–will go search them out!

  4. Elizabeth Jackson

    Pshaw, The comments system is being naughty. This is a test by Charlotte’s webmaster. P,S, Do you like the word “pshaw”?

    1. Charlotte Rains dixon

      I like the word pshaw, oh wonderful webmaster!

  5. J.D.

    Visited Rhodia. Pretty cool: mouse pad, trinket dish, pencil box.

    1. Charlotte Rains dixon

      Glad you like, J.D. Always happy to lead fellow writers to a new notebook fix. 🙂

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