I am a Facebook user, for the social aspect certainly but also for the various news media I ‘follow’ and which allow me to see a variety of headlines every day and then decide what I want to read.
This week my eyes were attracted by a New York Time article entitled Moleskine Notebooks Adapt to the Digital World. I love notebooks, sketchbooks, copybooks… and therefore I quickly clicked on the link and read the article as well as the discussion in the Facebook box below. There people gave their opinions on notebooks – mainly the paper version – and shared their favorite brands. Quite a few mentioned the Leuchtturm1917 notebook, which led me to more clicking and reading until I ended up buying a notebook!
This led me to ponder on the importance of tools for artists and writers. Most artists have their favorite brands of paints, sketchbooks and pens. This is true of writers and poets. After all the Moleskine was made famous because Bruce Chatwin and Hemingway wrote in one.
In Writing Down the Bones, Natalie Goldberg makes several suggestions about the ‘ideal’ pen. “It should be a fast writing pen because your thoughts are always much faster than your hand. You don’t want to to slow up your hand even more with a slow pen”.
On the subject of notebooks, she advises an inexpensive and portable one. Goldberg believes that if you buy something too fancy you might be led to think you need to write something good and therefore might never write at all. On the contrary if you go for a small and cheap one, you can carry it with you and write more spontaneously.
Nowadays a lot of us also write on electronic devices. As much as I love notebooks, I often write on my iPhone or computer, except when I am working in which case I favor the discreet and inconspicuous notebook.
Today poets, I’d like you to reflect on favorite tools. Do tools matter to you when it comes to writing? Do you have favorite brands? Are there still tools you’d love to try?