So … THINK ABOUT The Flex?

Flex-ing some creative muscle! I love Filofax. I do really. I only (re-) discovered them a couple of years ago and naturally developed a collection in a very short time – as you choose to do. I love the leathers, the weight of the binder in my hands, the appearance of the paper stuffed platinum mine of information.

It just doesn’t seem to … well, love me back again. I have read up on models, systems, sizes, printable layouts (thank you, Philofaxy!). I’ve attempted to make one Personal Filofax do everything (it doesn’t). I have had combinations of A5 notebook and Pocket diary (un-coordinated). I have had large rings (too stuffed, overweight), small bands (too small), compacts (convenient to carry, insufficient room), and slimline (okay for bedside records to be moved, which the majority of the time they’re not).

I genuinely have attempted. It’s not them, it’s me. The nagging problem is I want to utilize it for everything. Diary: I translate novels for a living and work from home, so I don’t go to conferences or need plenty of space to jot down jobs and consultations. Then Week per page to organize my own and work life I don’t need more, interleaved with lined note paper for quick jots. Put in a horizontal planner for work deadline and improvement summary, and I’m sorted. Work: I’m obviously working on my PC and take notes on a separate document which can be edited, added to and shared while I work.

In the Filofax work section I keep notepaper for jotting down ideas when I’m from my desk, month to view planner with daily goals and a list of autocorrect rules a. Not just a lot there either. Travel: I travel a lot for business as well as for pleasure. Before I go I cream my passport and printed travel documents into my Personal Malden and place a card holder with relevant travel credit cards, job done. I could use any old folder or finances really. But I would like to keep carefully the planning notes, and lists, info, research etc for my Camino trips in one place. Printing my very own itineraries and maps would be great – not so great in a Personal, though.

Projects: I’m desperate for a system of organizing my (copious) writing records on paper therefore I can work offline and off-PC, typing with an Alphasmart Neo. I am Municipal Liaison for our local Nanowrimo group and just about everyone has day Write-ins throughout the year, which does work for me. I favor making notes in some recoverable format rather than on the laptop, and normally carry notes for a number of projects, some first drafts, some in the planning or ideas stage, some needing editing and reworking.

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Ideas from discussions at Write-ins. Notes on heroes, on plot, progress, goals. Ideally I want a combined notebook and a place to keep printouts. What I want is something that works together with the real way I work. An ideal size is A5. Great writing space, easy to print your own stuff.

Enough room to take notes in the margins or even on the left-hand page, which I never write on anyway because of the rings. So far, so excellent. But as we all know, a well-fed A5 is murder to carry around. I would as well bring the laptop.