Finding Good Notebooks in Unexpected Places

26 January, 2020

Confession time: I’m partial to a certain brand of notebook. I’ve been using notebooks crafted by that company for a number of years and they’ve never let me down.

But I also realize that the quality of the notebooks I use doesn’t affect the quality of the thoughts and ideas that I jot on their pages. A higher-end notebook doesn’t inspire deeper thoughts, more tightly-focused ideas, or anything like that.

In fact, the notebook you pick up as a promo item at a conference or the one from the local drug store is just as good as the more expensive one you might buy at a stationery store.

Case in point: just after Christmas 2019, I found myself in a local branch of Daiso, a chain of Japanese discount stores. As I threaded my way through the store, I found myself in the stationery aisle. And, as you might have guessed, I zoomed in on the pocket notebooks.

Some of those notebooks were $3 (NZD) a pop, so I took a chance and bought three of them. One of those notebooks replaced the one I’d been using in the previous months. Guess what? That cheap, sturdy little notebook is doing its job. And doing it well. Just as well as the pricier notebooks I often use.

It just goes to show you that the quality of a notebook isn’t a matter of its cost. That the quality of a notebook isn’t wrapped up in the paper or the binding or the materials used in the covers. It definitely doesn’t always depend on who makes it.

A good notebook is the one that you find useful. It’s the one that doesn’t get in your way and lets you record what you need to record without falling apart.

Scott Nesbitt