First, there was construction paper and jars of paste. Then, there were number two pencils and college-ruled paper. If you were a well organized teen, you might have even had a Trapper Keeper. (Do they even still make Trapper Keepers?) It’s not just students who enjoy the thrill of fresh, new school supplies. This week, the Chicks talk about their writing essentials!
Like every other writer on the planet, I love notebooks. Not when they’re scribbled in, though. Only when they’re brand new. I’m also a sucker for supplies disguised as something else. For example, my tape dispenser looks like a martini glass with a pink Cosmo and a lime, and my sticky note dispenser is shaped like a tiny, black patent leather purse. My stapler is a little green alligator…you get the idea. Every once in a while I change things up, with shiny new supplies, but I can’t bear to throw the previous ones out—too cute, I guess—so I hide them in a junk cupboard in my husband’s office and visit them every now and then. Sometimes I bring them back out. And about those sticky notes…I go through a lot of them, because I enjoy crumpling them up forever and tossing them after I’ve worked through that annoying plot glitch or hideous to-do list item.
I’m quite particular about what pen and notebook I use when brainstorming my books. No offense to all the hard-working ballpoint pens out there, but I’m a ride-or-die gel-pen girl. In a pinch, I will use a Bic Gelocity or the classic retractable Pilot G2. But my writing weapon of choice is the Uniball Signo 207 BLX series, which is a black ink with just the slightest touch of color. My all-time favorite is the Purple Black color, and yes, I have bought these in bulk before. And probably will again. For notebooks, I’m just as crazy. My go-to is the Staples Sustainable Earth 1-Subject Wirebound Notebook in size 8-1/2″ x 11“. I love the brown-lined sugarcane-based paper, the inside folder and the hard brown cover that comes in a variety of different looks. I can’t walk or drive by a Staples without walking inside to just “casually” check their selection—and pray that they are on sale! Like most addictions, mine ain’t cheap.
To this day, there’s no school supply I don’t love, but if I was forced to pick a favorite, it would be the composition notebook. They served as journal during my teen years and I still have a few of them, which are laden with angst, drama, vitriol, and really bad poetry. Boy, are they a hoot to read. My daughter came home the other day with school supplies, and what was among them? A composition notebook. It’s nice to know that in the age of selfies, Snapchat, and oversharing, there’s still a place for that sweet academic memento.
My writing implement of choice is a Pilot Razor Point—a staple from my days working in ad agencies. They seemed to be sprinkled around on every surface back in those heady times, just waiting for the copywriters to grab them and jot down a brilliant, award-winning campaign idea. To this day, they still seem like they’re full of creative potential. Occasionally, my husband will surprise me with a handful of brand new Razor Points, which is an incredibly thoughtful and romantic gift, in my book. Speaking of books, every time I see a well designed blank book, I have to have it. This is why I try to avoid any area in which blank books are sold. In the moment, they fill me with such inspiration: Oh, the ideas I’ll have! The thoughts I will write within these pages! But the problem with blank books is, you can’t tear pages out, so I save them until I have something important enough to write in a beautifully bound book that will never be thrown away. Which means I have a whole shelf full of beautiful books with not a single word written in them. I have to say, though, thinking about school supplies makes me want to go grab some glitter, magic markers and glue and pretend I’m in art class!
Readers, what was your favorite school supply? And what grown-up school supplies can you not live without?
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