Image of Emperor Penguins, assembled before a mountainous landscape

The Notes Section: How to Convert a Hobonichi Weeks into a Writer’s Notebook

TL;DR

♦️ Pub: Oct 17, 2019 | Updated: Oct 17, 2019 @ | Reading: 5 min. | Words: 1,157 ♦️

This Writer’s Notebook lives to preclude oft-repeated searches. Unlike most planners, the Hobonichi Weeks tames any reference collection tossed in its direction, courtesy of its intensely flexible structure.

Why the Hobonichi Weeks to power my Writer’s Notebook?

Because I want only the data of intense personal interest—to which I refer most frequently—I chose the 69-Notes-pages Weeks rather than its heftier 212-page younger sibling. Another reason: the classic Weeks nestles fuss-free in virtually any pocket; the Mega’s comparative thickness balks at too many of those same pockets. Either way, the Weeks personifies portability in a manner untouched by its analog cousins.

Distinguish: Notebook vs Bullet Journal

A bullet journal eats active data, that is, information inserted throughout the day. The entries, mostly actionable in nature, call for attention until a ✓ appears next to it. Monthly calendars, future date-sensitive logs, weekly and daily spreads form the bujo’s contours, while a reference section, i.e. Collections, closes out the planning sidekick.

In contrast, my Writer’s Notebook hosts only reference data peculiar to writers. I restrict all dated events to my bullet journal. Likewise, neither actionable items nor daily/weekly logs appear. In short, this Writer’s Notebook forms Collections Central, start to finish.

Exploiting the Weeks’ Notes section for Collections

Most of the spreads destined to feed this notebook exist in another form, scattered among index cards, assorted bullet journals, and clipped scraps of paper. Weary of that helter-skelter non-helpful reality, I resolved to corral vital segments, update, and corral them into one go-anywhere container.

My progress chart schedules finalization of the Notes section by mid-November. I will finalize the associated Index after completing all insertions. Additional spreads, which I sense may assist fellow writers, will appear in due time. During the interim, you may find these spreads helpful.

Words

Every bullet journal and analog notebook I fashion opens with quotes pages. No page duplicates another. Within the context of this Writer’s Notebook, a second set of quotes will follow pages 1 and 2, focusing exclusively on writer / writing flavored words of encouragement.

Quotes

Quotes appear on pages 1–4 in my Hobonichi Weeks hosted Writer’s Notebook.
Quotes appear on pages 1–4 in my Hobonichi Weeks hosted Writer’s Notebook.

Word Count by Genre

I did not retain source info. Sorry ‘bout that. But for those demanding such info, Google is your friend. One thing I do distinctly recall: consulting and comparing multiple resources until satisfied regarding validity.

These rough draft spreads appear in an once-archived A6 Hobonichi Techo. I favor that book for hammering out details for projects, spreads, and the like.

Fiction

Writers sometimes daydream about branching out into new genres. This chart suggests anticipated book lengths for assorted fiction genres.
Writers sometimes daydream about branching out into new genres. This chart suggests anticipated book lengths for assorted fiction genres.

Non-Fiction

Writers sometimes daydream about branching out into new genres. This chart suggests anticipated book lengths for assorted NonFiction genres.
Writers sometimes daydream about branching out into new genres. This chart suggests anticipated book lengths for assorted NonFiction genres.

Tricky Words

Confession: some a vs. b words prove so troublesome I make a graceful exit. Read: I choose another word while editing. But my rough drafts conjure multiple SherlockReena-induced irritations (e.g, Really, SherockReena??! Honestly girlFriend, can you even breathe and write at the same time?). This spread, likely to span a half-dozen pages, will protect me from me, both in terms of proper usage and correct spelling.

Writer’s Notebook: Tricky Words, my (growing) cheat sheet
Writer’s Notebook: Tricky Words, my (growing) cheat sheet

Kindle Nuances

Back during pre-Netscape days—when Gopher and WAIS served as THE primary net-based search mechanisms—I “viewed source” to teach myself basic HTML. Result: when WordPress inexplicably futzes formatting, I can jump into the Text Editor to spot and fix the error within seconds. Turns out, that skill carries over well to Kindle-related coding. Hence, I keep the basics unique to Kindle formatting at hand.

HTML Tags

Yes, I know apps abound claiming to shield the writer from Kindle coding-related chores. But many apps, if not all, stumble at some point. These lists convert potential cuss-filled lengthy sessions into a 1–2 minute fix.

This facing-page spread pinpoints two specific types of HTML Coding:

  • Friendly Tags: Kindle ❤️ wubs ‘em ❤️
  • Customized Tags: Kindle’s way of saying 😊 me be special! 😇

Because the ePub3 issue muscles its way into Kindle discussions, I included a few related vital points.

Title and SubTitle

Talk ‘bout NEED to know info!

A few critical gotta-know tidbits specific to Kindle publishing.
A few critical gotta-know tidbits specific to Kindle publishing.

My Related Files / Pointers

I’ll fill in this template a bit at a time over weeks of evenings. Because I suspect I’m not alone in the organize-challenged department, I share this #BeforeThePen spread for your consideration.

Idea pops, prompting dancing fingers across a keyboard. Months later, DuhLand kidnaps me: where’s that (bad words) thing?? Meet my analog fire extinguisher.
Idea pops, prompting dancing fingers across a keyboard. Months later, DuhLand kidnaps me: where’s that (bad words) thing?? Meet my analog fire extinguisher.

WrapUp

I chose to present these spreads because my google forays for similar spreads left me starving.

This Hobonichi Weeks as Writer’s Notebook Series

The series opened with the calendar month section, converted into a word list repository. The usage respects my multi-year coverage intent.

The second article focused on the facing-page spread providing a Yearly Index / Overview. My reconfiguration yields a 2020-2023 overview of my writing sessions, by category: drafting, editing, research, and outline / organizing.

This article wraps the series formally, but related spreads will ease onto the site.


Call to Action

Chaos disrupts idea implementation. Organization erupts creativity’s handiwork. The end of the year now approaches, with its extra down time.Wisdom suggests gathering your writing-related loose ends, and self-gifting the joy of easy retrieval of needed info. This Energizer-bunny style gift keeps on giving, long after you’ve stamped the make a Writer’s Notebook done. After all, you deserve the best!

How will you improve your writing life?

Soooo many writer reference notes scattered in helter-skelter fashion. Weary of playing hide and go seek, I conjured order from the chaos—using a Hobonichi Weeks.
Soooo many writer reference notes scattered in helter-skelter fashion. Weary of playing hide and go seek, I conjured order from the chaos—using a Hobonichi Weeks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.