I grew up amidst fields and forests in a small village in Austria. Our neighbor was an 80-year old German writer, war veteran and well-travelled wise man and as a child I became intrigued by his stories about the world outside of my small village. This intrigue grew into a life-long desire to see the world and to discover the things I had only heard of as a young child.
In 2004 I spent a summer in Quebec, Canada, where I clearly remember one girl who used a beautiful, yet stylish, classic writing book as her diary. The moment I saw it I was smitten, but I never did find out where she had gotten it at the time. Later, I discovered it was a Paperblanks book.
Returning to Canada for a visit two years later, I was able to find a Paperblanks blank journal for myself. I was 19 years old and realizing for the first time how important it is to remain in touch with friends – particularly when you’re a traveler.
I began to think of my Paperblanks books as a friendship guardian of sorts. I’d ask my colleagues, flatmates, neighbours, friends and even guests at the International hotel where I worked to leave a note and their contact details in my Paperblanks. It became one of my most precious possessions.
Sadly, it became lost, and to this day I have no idea what became of it. Undeterred, however, a few years later I bought myself a Paperblanks dayplanner and a writing journal and started again.
Now, my Paperblanks books accompany me everywhere. Looking into my writing journal, you’ll find notes, drawings, scribbles, forms and shapes. Essentially, wherever my pen takes me. There is no particular system, only that I always note down the date and place when starting a new thread. Looking at it later, it takes me back to that particular moment and allows me to continue working on the idea I had. It carries all the roots of my projects and achievements.
I use my writing journal to capture and visualize my ideas when they arise and use my dayplanner as a timekeeper and daily companion. It is full of meetings, to-do lists, memos, contact information and travel schedules. Through my work as a career coach, as the owner of a marketing agency, as a writer and as a full-time event planner in the United Arab Emirates, to say that I need something to help me organize my tasks and endeavors equally is an understatement!
Both of my Paperblanks books are extremely valuable to me. Room for material possessions is very limited to me since I am moving a lot, but my dayplanner and journal are always the first items I put into my suitcase.
Find out more about Melanie at her website at www.melaniehaselmayr.com.
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