Jenn Reese Writer, Artist, Geek

Messages to Yourself


My new Moleskine notebook arrived today. (For those you not on Twitter, Facebook, or G+: I left my old Moleskine on the plane on Sunday and have not gotten it back.)

Moleskine notebooks are sacred to me. I carry them with me everywhere — to bed at night, to my writing area in the morning, to my dayjob, to the movies, to restaurants… basically anywhere I am, so is my Moleskine. I write everything inside. Novel notes and brainstorms, lists of character names, daily to-do lists, goals for the future, transcripts of phone calls, private journal entries, phone numbers… well, you get the idea. My moleskine is basically an extension of my brain.

When I get a new Moleskine, I put the following items on the first page: name, phone number, email address, and the fact that I offer a reward for the Moleskine’s return.

On the second page of every Moleskine, I write a single phrase. Can you guess what it is? I’ll give you some choices:

A. Please don’t steal this.
B. Write your passion.
C. I can do anything.
D. Don’t Panic.
E. Take what is useful, discard what is not, make what remains your own. [paraphrased from Bruce Lee]

Take your best guess! And tell me…What message to yourself do you put in your notebooks?

About the author

Jenn Reese


  • Wow, hard one to guess. I'm just going to go with the Bruce Lee, because it's just hard to ever bet against Bruce Lee.

    I'm going to check the second page of the two Moleskines I have within reach.

    Moleskine #1: Starts right out with a personal journal entry from the first Starry Heaven workshop, written at Oregano's Pizza. Man, I miss that pizza.

    Moleskine #2: "Behringer Eurorack UB802." Huh. I haven't the slightest idea what that is. Maybe it's spy code!

    • I'll side with E, merely because it is the most ornate. My own Moleskines — and I've filled dozens of them — have my name, phone numbers, and emails, but no mottos.

  • I love the idea of writing a message to yourself in there! I'm going to try that…and while I'm torn between B and E for you, I'm definitely considering nicking B for myself! ;)

  • I would put money on E!

    And I write a message to myself in the beginning of each of my Moleskines too! Each one is different, and only occurs to me at some point during that particular Moleskine's use…

    The most recent is: "Tell me exactly what you saw, and what you think it means," which is something Grace Kelly says in Rear Window :)

  • They’re all such good options (I’m ruling out A) but I got as far as B and thought HELL YEAH JENN! And then I read C and D and E, and thought the same thing. Of course I would feel like a chump betting against Bruce Lee…

  • I'll go with E. And I love this idea. I'll have to steal your idea, and maybe some of these messages, when I start my next notebook!

By Jenn Reese
Jenn Reese Writer, Artist, Geek

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