Writing Wednesday: Writing outside the lines

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President open with Journal 21

I’m always fascinated when people use their planners in different ways other than just to plan. Two of my favorite books on early planners, The Accidental Diarist (which I’ve written about here on the blog before) and Time, Space and Gender in the Nineteeth-Century British Diary mention users who wrote outside the daily spaces of their diaries (what we would call daily planners today).

In the 1800’s, men and women used pre-formatted diaries to record expenses and note memoranda. Sometimes the daily spaces weren’t large enough so their writings spilled over into the margins, on other pages, and even onto the endleaves of the books. The content could be anything: recipes for making brass out of copper and zinc by a young watchmaker, or eggnog by a widowed housekeeper (Accidental Diarist pages 86 and 149); addresses or health (Time, Space and Gender pages 66-67).

At the top of this post is a photo from Sandy McNeely’s guest post showing how she uses the inside cover of her President weekly planner as a dashboard with reference calendars, sticky notes and quick-reference information. I love how she uses that space as a handy spot for things she needs quick access to.

Do you write outside the (planner) lines? If you fill a day’s space, do you continue it elsewhere? Do you use the notes pages or endpapers for other things besides planning?

One thought on “Writing Wednesday: Writing outside the lines

  1. I’m using only a monthly calendar, so I’m recording things like doctor’s appointments, books on the schedule to be published, etc. I’ve sometimes shortened the text a little. But I’ve also used the blank days (like the box before the first day of the month) for things like addresses of the doctor’s office. I also will stick Post It’s on the calendar. There are some things where date I do it isn’t important; just that I do it that month. Like I’m going on a cruise, so I have Post-It reminders to call the travel clinic to make an appointment for shots.

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