At lunch today I rather impulsively purchased a Moleskine journal. I unabashadly admit to being swayed by the hype, the ad campaign, and the appeal to my vanity so cleverly engineered by Modo & Modo. Anyone with any delusions or pretensions of literary aptitude could not help but be swayed by taglines like “The legendary notebook of Hemingway, Picasso, Chatwin.” And I don’t even know who Chatwin was.

However, in addition to buying into the completely seductive image of my literary genius being tapped like a keg by this little black book, of pearls of priceless purity being scratched out on the pages between sips of strong coffee, in addition to all that is the stark truth that if you want to write better, you should write more often. And if you occasionally have good ideas when you are somewhere other than at your computer, those good ideas are very frequently lost forever.

Hmmm. Composing on paper, what a novel idea.

The idea of having a notepad in which to jot things down is a powerful one, and I hope to have the discipline to do it regularly. And if it requires the additional incentive of purchasing an iconic little black booklet to do so, then so be it. I know that a spiral-bound Mead notebook would hold the same words just as well, but there is something about using a Moleskine that is different. It’s more formal, more ceremonial. As if by writing the words in that journal, they take on a gravitas that a Mead spiral pad simply could not confer. This blogger I think describes it quite well.

And if it smacks of more than a little pretentiousness on my part, I can accept that, too. After all it’s quite probably true.