Obligatory Black Friday Post

Hope you all enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving and are stuffed with good food. If you’re starting your holiday shopping now, don’t forget to consider the Notebook Stories Store on Amazon for a selection of notebooks, sketchbooks, journals, pens, and books about sketchbooks and journaling.  Blick Art Materials is also a great source for sketchbooks, pens and other art-related gifts:  BLICK Holiday Gift Shop: One-stop shopping for everyone on your list!

And your purchases made through these links will help support this site! Thank you!

Review & Giveaway: VS. Journal by Knock-Knock

It’s funny, I’m not a big user of prompted journals nowadays, but I remember having a few of them as a kid that I diligently filled out with answers to questions and information about my life. They are fun to look back at now, though the questions were pretty basic and not really very creative or insightful. It would be interesting to see what I would have written if I’d had something like the VS. Journal, which is a lot more thought-provoking!


The VS. Journal is a nice, chunky hardcover, with an attractive design in eye-catching colors. Inside there are funky endpapers with doodly drawings, and a ribbon marker.


A few pages at the beginning have an essay introducing the concept of the journal, which is that each page presents you with a quick choice to make: this thing or that thing, with some space to write about your choice. In small, upside-down type at the bottom of the page, you’ll find their interpretation of what your choice says about your personality.


I’m not sure how accurate or valuable these judgments may be, but the choice and its interpretation can make great writing exercises or prompts for self-exploration in the journal.

Here’s the detail from their website:

Life is full of decisions, and our choices make up so much of who we are. The Vs. journal features over 230 illustrated face-offs of psychological import, insightful interpretations, and plenty of writing room for contemplation to provide self-awareness that you could never achieve on your own.

  • Featuring options as diverse as reason vs. emotion, bath vs. shower, and zombie vs. cyborg
  • The perfect gift for people who like to choose
  • Hardcover; 5.25 x 7 inches; 256 pages; 230+ illustrations; ribbon page marker

The suggested retail price is $17.00.

You can find the VS. Journal, and lots of other fun products by Knock Knock, at Amazon, at various gift shops and bookstores, as well as at Knock Knock’s own online shop. And you can also enter to win one that I’m giving away to a randomly selected winner! Enter in any or all of these ways:

On Twitter, tweet something containing “@knockknock” and “@NotebookStories, and follow “@knockknock” and “@NotebookStories.

On Facebook, “like” the  Notebook Stories page  and the Knock Knock page, and post something containing the words “VS. Journal” on the Notebook Stories wall.

On your blog, post something containing the words “Vs. Journal” and “Notebook Stories” and link back to this blog.

The deadline for entry is Friday Nov. 30 at 11:59PM, EST– extra time to enter because of the Thanksgiving holiday! Good luck everyone!
And please remember to check my posts on Facebook and Twitter for an announcement of the winner.


Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals at Pencils.com

Our friends at Pencils.com have some great promotions coming up for your holiday shopping:

Blackwing Friday (11/23/2012) – For every $20 spent, we’re giving away a free Blackwing 602 pencil


Cyber Monday (11/26/2012) – We’ll be slashing prices on over 25 items


Blackwing Friday through Cyber Monday (11/23 – 11/26) – Free shipping on orders of $25 or more.


If you’re looking for ideas, I reviewed some of Pencils.com’s Palomino Blackwing Sketchbooks recently. And here’s another item that might be on my Christmas list: the Palomino Hardcover Luxury Notebook! Keep an eye out for a review and giveaway coming soon.

Moleskine Monday: Assorted Art

Another collection Moleskine sketchbook art, including these:

See more at Showcase of Beautiful Moleskine Art | Abduzeedo Design Inspiration & Tutorials.

Notebook Addict of the Week: Miss Lai Lai

This week’s addict writes in detail about her love of notebooks and plans for using a new one:

I have always been addicted to stationery, in particular notebooks and organisers. I can’t remember when or how the addiction started. Maybe it was since I was a little girl scribbling on my notebooks with “Dear Diary” entries. Or maybe that perfectionist in me trying to be that super-duper-organised student back then, or as a  corporate warrior in the recent years, that I would try to hunt for the perfect system to organise my life.  Alas, I am still not the most organised person (compared to some others I know) and I have accepted that it was just excuses for my addiction to notebooks, organisers and the like.

These are her unused notebooks:

A collection of her spiral notebooks:

Read more and see more photos at On Notebooks Galore and the Art of Scribbling | The Random Rants and Musings of Miss Lai Lai.

Wooden Case For Field Notes Notebooks

Now here’s a perfect holiday gift for a notebook addict, at least if they like Field Notes or similarly sized notebooks:


I’ve always thought it would be nice to have some custom-made, perfectly-sized notebook storage. This box adds a nice extra: tabs that you can use to organize your various Field Notes volumes. Pretty cool!

Read more at Gorgeous ‘Archival’ Wooden Case For Field Notes Notebooks | Cult of Mac.

Notebooks at BookMarc

BookMarc is the Marc Jacobs bookstore on Bleecker St. in NYC. They have a cool selection of old and new books, and some rather nice notebooks:

The notebooks are all lined inside, seem to be of pretty good quality, and say they are made by Chameleon Like, Inc. On the company’s website, they offer a variety of journals that can be custom embossed and imprinted, including these. The small notebooks seem to wholesale for about $6.05 for quantities of 5000 and up, so the $15 that BookMarc is charging is about the markup you’d expect, maybe a bit on the high end. The wholesale cost usually includes a 4-color belly band, so maybe they actually paid less. Chameleon Like’s minimum quantity for these seems to be 100, at $9.85 each. Worth considering if you are looking for a nice promotional notebook.

Veteran’s Day: Soldiers’ Sketchbooks

A few sketchbooks by soldiers, in honor of Veteran’s Day:

By WWII veteran Williard Dominick:


From the Library of Congress website:

And I’ve posted about this before but it’s worth revisiting:
A Soldier’s Sketchbook: From the Front Lines of World War II

Thank you to all who have served our military, especially those who have managed to create some beautiful images in the midst of wartime.

Notebook Addict of the Week: Voron

Voron emailed me these photos of her notebooks. The close-up is of a Paperchase notebook. I detect a strong preference for colorful wire-bound notebooks, but there are a few plainer hardcovers snuck in there too!

Thanks for sharing your addiction, Voron!

Election Day Sketchbook

I love this: Mike Sheehan used a fold-out sketchbook (probably a Moleskine Japanese Album) to capture drawings of people in line to vote.

See more at Off-Ramp : Mike Sheehan’s Election Day sketchbook | 89.3 KPCC.

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