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What’s In My Commonplace Journal?

When I wrote the post The Journals That I Am Currently Using, I had mentioned my commonplace journal as writing journal and that’s because 1. My primary goal for this journal is to use it for poems, stories, and other stuff related to writing, and 2. I recently learned the term ‘commonplace journal’ and realised that after 2-3 months into a year, my writing journal turns into a commonplace journal.

A commonplace journal is a notebook or journal wherein people write their thoughts, quotes, random ideas, excerpts of what they read, stuff picked up from here and there, lessons learned… you name it! Anything worth noting down for future reference is put in this journal.

I use a five-subject spiral-bound notebook each year for my writing (commonplace) journal. I used to call it writing journal because most of the stuff I put in it is related to writing but this year, I found out that I was using it up too much and it was filling up quite fast. I don’t like switching this journal to a new one in the middle of a year (I fill the last page left in it in the last days of the year), and hence, I decided to start a new journal for my long-form poems. I still write poems in my commonplace journal but not so much as before.

The reason why I use a five-subject notebook as the commonplace journal is that such notebooks are divided into five sections and I like to stay organised. I start using each section from both back and front which allows me to create 10 categories in one journal. And if I leave a piece of writing mid-way in the first section, I can write the new content in any other section, without leaving pages for the former piece or finishing it up in a hurry.

I use a five-subject notebook even for writing my blog posts since I leave articles mid-way to finish them later and start writing new articles in another section.

I had used Luxor A5 5-subject Notebook in 2018 and had LOVED it. In 2019, I used Solo B5 square-grid 5-subject notebook and it was too good but it took me longer to finish it since B5 size was pretty big and it was too hard to carry it around (in my home). This year, I am using Navneet HQ A5 5-Subject notebook and I am not as happy with it as I was with previous ones. It hardly has space for writing. Margins are too wide according to the size of the page. The date column on each page takes up too much space. Even if I have switched writing poems to the other journal, I don’t think this commonplace journal will last for a year. I’ll try to make it last though.

Now, what’s in my commonplace journal? Let’s have a look:
  • The first section is dedicated to writing poems (short) and quotes and will remain reserved for writing only. I love capturing some memorable moments of my life in poems and those poems need to be in this journal, nowhere else.
  • The second section has my information related to collaborations, interviews, features, and also notes of the online courses that I began but never finished, along with some notes from informative Youtube videos.
  • The third section, I haven’t started using yet. If I run out of pages in any of the other sections, I can use this section or I’ll assign it to something else as or when required. I could only show this section in the image because all other stuff is either too personal or in too bad handwriting.
  • The fourth section has the notes of information––I randomly gain from the internet or my friends or anyone else––that can be useful to me in any way in future (mostly related to writing or blogging). This section also has the notes of some books that I made from Blinkist app, the app which picks up key ideas from non-fiction books and presents them in a 12-19 minutes summary (depends upon the content of the book).
  • The fifth and the last section of my commonplace journal is used for planning my poetry book (which is in progress), making schedules I hardly ever follow, and for writing the content of a few Instagram posts which I find so useful that just saving them or keeping a screenshot is not enough. They are mostly about self-discipline or manifestation, not just any random post. The last page of the journal is reserved for noting down blog post ideas that appear out of nowhere and need to be caught immediately.

So, that’s it. I would love to know if you too have a commonplace journal and what’s in it. Do comment below or DM me on Instagram at @meetlife240.

Stay safe.


  1. I feel shy to call myself a writer now 🙈🙈🙈


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