A History of ….. Journaling

I WAS going to title this post “A History of Violence” where I detailed my mis-spent youth kneecapping old ladies for protection money but since that Illegitimate Rat Aragorn already made a movie by that name I figured the self appointed guardians of all things legal, or goons, would knee cap me. So better safe than sorry. Also,  this mention about said movie is in no ways an endorsement of it. It is a “real” violence filled movie [as opposed to John Wick] and I found it extremely disturbing.

Last year I posted about my Book Recording and the journey that has been and continues to be. Today I want to talk about journaling and the various kinds of journals that I’ve used over the years. I love this kind of thing to be honest and is probably the closest I’ll ever come to being all arts&craftsy.

I started my journaling back in middle grade. I’d scribble in an 8 1/2 x11 spiral notebook for a couple of pages, then tear them out a week or 2 later, throw them out and not write again for months. It never even occurred to me to write in something more permanent. Of course, I suspect most of my writings was about girls anyway, so no big loss ๐Ÿ™‚

However, when I began attending Bible School in the fall of ’97,  I began writing every evening in this little guy:


Little 4×5 inch notebook. I ended up writing in 5 of these suckers


Corn and potatoes. I was well on my way to a Pulitzer, even back then!

After awhile, I felt my needs increasing and I moved up the Classy Scale a step. Not a lot, but I was definitely upwardly mobile.

j3You think I’m obsessed about journals, you should see some of the entries I made about various pens I try and what works and what doesn’t. And that hasn’t stopped. I just did an entry in my latest journal about 4 months ago about the joys of using the Pilot G2 premium gel roller fine tip pens.

Then I graduated in 2000 and life got real. I had a job, a car, I was renting a place of my own, I made my first proposal. After that it was time to start expressing my inner torment and utter pain in a journal that meant business. I wanted something that would last the ages and remind me in years to come just how much suffering and anguish I had gone through. Yeah, I was that guy.


Pure black, like the pain and misery deep within my soul. Sense a theme yet? ๐Ÿ˜€

Oberon Design to the rescue! I’ve used that cover for 4 of the black blanks and it is still as good condition as when I bought it back in ’05 or ’06.


But a journal looks even cooler and more soul’y when it has a real leather removable, re-usable cover on it.

Then I met Mrs Bookstooge [well, she wasn’t Mrs Bookstooge at the time, obviously!] and once I’d filled up my latest tome of despair, I quit journaling for almost 5 years. But getting married makes one a hostage to fate and once again life hit me in the nads and I had to write. But I was beyond black, I wanted something to express how mystical and above the common man my thoughts were.


There are CLASPS! and lots of shiny lines! The “Common Man” does not write in such a tome as this.

Nowadays I write in something that opens, and stays open [VERY important when writing while sitting in a pew], and will look cool on my shelf.


The text on the flap is “Arthur Conan Doyle”.  No clasps, but the flap makes it easier to write in in public.


My journaling now is usually a gigantic bitch session, where I vent on paper so I don’t vent in public. Names of jerks and super-jerks blurred for reasons. I AM that grumpy old guy, whooo!

What does the future hold? Well, I’m glad you asked  *grin*  I am currently writing in this small leather journal as a medical journal, keeping track of my blood sugars, food eaten, insulin taken, with times and amounts. It’s a lot of detail but it is what I have to do to keep my diabetes under control. I like the tie, but sadly Barnes&Noble only has it in 5×7 [which is pictured] and nothing larger. If you know of a nice leather, tie down journal that is in the 7×10 or preferably 8×11 range, please let me know in the comments. Lined or unlined doesn’t matter.

j8 (1)

This leather one travels with me everywhere now.  And it has its own G2 roller gel pen *wink*

And there you have it. More information about Bookstooge and Journaling than you ever wanted, thought possible or even knew existed. Remember folks, I am a Dichotomy [make sure you say “dichotomy” in an appropriately sepulchral tone of voice]. I use a machete or a pen with equal ease and familiarity.  Except for when I’m tired, then I’m just a problem.


36 thoughts on “A History of ….. Journaling

  1. Wow, what a trip down memory lane this must have been! I don’t journal, though I used to scribble story ideas in notebooks back when I still did NaNoWriMo every year. I swear by Five Star notebooks, though I like spoiling myself with the rare pretty embossed journal every now and then ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, 20 years next month. If you’d have asked me in ’97 if I was still going to be journaling in ’17, I would have told you with 100% certainty that the world would have ended by then. And yet here we are ๐Ÿ˜€


    1. I look at it like knitting. Some people just like to knit. I don’t happen to be one of those, but I do happen to be one of those who can write and write and write, and it is pretty much the banal stuff of life over and over and over. And I never get tired of writing it ๐Ÿ™‚

      Historians in 100 years will love me ๐Ÿ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Clasps look cook, but they don’t do a good job of keep the dang thing closed. A flap does keep it closed and provides a nice place to stick a pen. Clasps aren’t big fans of pens, and visa versa…

      Liked by 2 people

  2. What a wonderful geek post! 20 years and counting. Just made my day. So fully of goodies. It’s always nice to see I’m not alone…

    For many years I used moleskine journals (I’ll do a post about it one of these days). 6 years I decided to start using online journaling and never looked back. Still going strong…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Awww that brings back memories!! I had the same paperblank! The shiny one with the clasps. I used it for all kinds of things like my hours at work, appointments, shopping lists, quotes I heard & liked…

    It was a mess in the end.

    Poor pretty book.

    Love your journal entry from 97, it’s adorable! I remember digging up potatoes in the field when I was little – always loved getting dirty ๐Ÿ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Your comment made me laugh, because I was 19 in ’97 ๐Ÿ˜€

      My local bookshop has a lot of paperblank journals and there is a lot of variety. I like spending time just looking at the different varieties and seeing how they fit into my hand…

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Lol. I did a lot of growing up from ’97 to ’00, but not that much ๐Ÿ˜€

          and you may call me “Sensei Sir”. A sign of respect for all the wisdom that I have garnered in my advanced years ๐Ÿ˜‰

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Haha ๐Ÿ˜€ the wisdom that came with digging for potatoes ๐Ÿ˜‰
            Talking about age though.. people still ask me for my ID sometimes when I want to buy alcohol and guess my age wrong by 10 years.. i used to be annoyed but now that i am almost 30 I don’t mind so much anymore ๐Ÿ˜€

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Sam Gamgees would have been proud of me.

              And I hear you about the age thing. We told another couple in our church that we’d been married for almost 9 years and the lady looked at us askance and quietly asked “just how old was Mrs B when you got married?” She thought Mrs B was 24 and me in my late 20’s. We were 35 and 39 at the time. We laughed so hard ๐Ÿ˜€

              Liked by 1 person

  4. ooh I like the shiny and leather ones!! I used to write a journal, but I gave up on that years ago and to be honest most of my notebooks have always been stories, notes and ideas (I can’t say that I’m upset that they’re all that now ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). I have an *insane* notebook collection though- varying from really boring to nice and elaborate- I’m actually in the process of cataloguing them so I can have some nice clear documents for some of my ideas. I also was gonna say that you’re entry for ’97 was adorable- and then I saw the other comment about how you were 19 lol and I think I’m gonna have to call you something more honorous than “Sensei Sir” for the 14 year age difference ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You can call me “Most Honorable Bookstooge”, just make sure you draw out the “o” in “most” so it more like “ohhhhhhhhhhh” ๐Ÿ™‚ Kind of like Umi from Xiaolin Showdown.

      I think journaling is something that people do because they have to, not because they want to. I have a need to express myself and sometimes those thoughts are simply not meant for public consumption ๐Ÿ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This was pretty interesting. There was a time I thought it would be cool to have a diary filled with stuff that would someday in the future look so vintage and rare that you’d think it was written by a king who had a secret treasure cave hidden somewhere between the lines. I guess I have yet to develop that desire to put down in words what went through my head through the day or anything. I think one of my biggest no-no to journaling is my handwriting that is simply uninspiring when looked back at… I don’t think there’s an easy fix to that hahahah Thanks for sharing! ๐Ÿ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Handwriting. Yeah, I know what you mean. I’ve thought about taking some calligraphy courses to improve mine, but then never followed through. I guess I figure my journal is filled with hum drum boring every day stuff so my hand writing is good enough for that! ๐Ÿ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

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