Lots of notebooks. So many good ideas.

February 6, 2013

The problem with social media – and I’ve said this in different ways since 2007 – is that it’s not ‘new media’ and it’s not very social. Perhaps you’ve heard the same sentiment from other quarters. People like Leo Laporte and Chris Brogan and CC Chapman and Aaron Strout have all given their take on what social tools can do for you and how people are still going to be people.

What I understand from that last belief – people will be people – is that social media isn’t going to make the ugly into princes, it isn’t going to make the basement-dwelling gamer into a world-class orator, and it isn’t going to replace basic skills like communication, good writing, clear thinking and (ironically) social adeptness.

To give you a glimpse into the grey matter sitting on my neck, this column blossomed out of a house renovation. Not a figurative house, but an actual construction project. As I emptied my tiny bungalow of belongings I came across many dozen notebooks. Some were full of notes from stories I’ve covered, while some were empty.

I love empty notebooks because they symbolize potential. The potential to capture thoughts in the middle of the night. The potential to craft a novel in longhand. The potential to wow the world with a succinctly captured snippet of clarity. Empty notebooks represent the start of a new day – a day that you craft from the moment you shed your bedclothes and brush your teeth.

I saved these notebooks and hope to use them when the renovation is done. I would like to write more books. I would like to capture thoughts that occur to me in the middle of the night. I would like to have an impact by bringing clarity to readers…via a scrawled thought on a canvas of notebook paper.

And that brings me to my point today. I don’t care if you’re the world’s best podcaster, an Internet and social media celebrity, a motivational savant, or some guy called Stroutmeister…they’re just people who have found a way to live their lives with their minds and eyes open to inspiration.

For $1.19 go get yourself a notebook…then you can too.

Share your ideas in the comments (after you’ve saved them on paper).