Object Lessons: The Writer's Notebook


Holly explores the writer's relationship with one of her most intimate possessions.

I’m always present. Inanimate, but permanently full of thoughts.


I’m a portable mind. The external cerebrum that contains those forgotten thoughts.


I’m the object that’s thrown into your backpack before a long day out. Taken out to your university, work place or favourite location to sit and think.


I’m opened up in coffee shops as you glance around and figure out the characters sat opposite you. The one that you drop and rush to pick up.


I’m the central core that you can’t bear to lose. You’re lost in mazes and trails of thought without me.


I’m doodled on by anxious hands with writer’s block. Drawings appear when words can’t be found.


I’m progressively messy. Once the new stationery you planned to keep neat and tidy.


I’m the one you’re sat by the sea with as you jot down the notions. The item you slip out on a mind-numbing day at work for productive entertainment.


I’m there by the bed when you wake up, confused by that nightmare or inspired by a dream. The object you turn to when you don’t feel like typing.


I’m covered in rips and tears, tea-rings and stains. Holding the symbols of pens and pencils, scribbles of a reckless and inspired mind.


I’m bent and tattered, some parts missing, some pages half-full or empty. Encompassing your to-do lists and ideas for your future projects.


I’m tattooed with dried ink, depictions of an imagination brought to life. The emptiness of some pages convey the ideas you were too scared to write down.


I’m there when you need me – the handiest and most personal of all books. Keeping your essay notes, project plans and next best-sellers safe.

by Holly Challinor