I like to start on a new notebook on New Year’s Day. It’s symbolic both of a fresh start and a clean slate. Or scraped tablet as the phrase “tabula rasa” translates to, describing the process by which wax tablets of old were reused, blanked by scraping off the writing. I love that idea, like shedding yourself of preconceptions to imbibe something new.
I keep several notebooks for different uses: reading and research notes, project logs and ideas, article drafts, and musings.
I’ve long wanted to own this Atlas Obscura notebook. I’m a fan of the site and one of its founders – the writer Joshua Foer. In the course of writing his wonderful book Moonwalking with Einstein, he won the US Memory Championship.
But I could only find the Atlas Obscura Explorer’s Journal online and at considerable cost for a notebook. I’d rather splurge on locally crafted leather journals.
It turned out several journals were (take note of the tense, I bought everything I could get my hands on that day) available in Book Sale for a fraction of the original price. After a quick side trip from yearend engagements, I got my haul. Some I set aside to give away, others I reserved for my use.
Today I opened one, wrote my name and contact details on the first page and jotted down my first written notes of 2021.