Thing-a-Day 04: Reporter-Style ETP Notebooks

Thing-a-Day 04: Reporter-Style ETP Notebooks

Reporter-Style ETP

After getting to the voting polls at 6AM, I headed to Starbucks to get a jump on today’s THING OF THE DAY.

I’ve been using reporter-style notebooks recently to keep continuity on different complicated projects. One of the nice things about a reporter-style notebook is that they are skinny (4″ wide), which makes them easier to put on your desk to the right of your keyboard without shifting your mouse too far out of the way. Assuming, of course, you are using a tenkeyless-style keyboard like me.

Mockup and download follows.

The Design

Work in Progress

The design is based on the ETP MINI, with a redesigned day grid to fit the available space. Since there’s not enough room to run a completely unbroken 14-hour grid, this version of the ETP splits the day into three tracks: MORNING, AFTERNOON, and EVENING. For example, when you get up you might make a note at the top of the column, then enter the starting hour of your morning once you begin work. You break for lunch sometime later, and in the afternoon you enter some notes and a starting time. And so on for the evening.

Design The idea is that you can think of the day as “three main activity sections” of variable length, though still separated by breaks corresponding to lunch and dinner. There is enough space in each track for 6 hours, which gives you some leeway in splitting up your day. Perhaps I should have called them “sprints” instead.

I’d really like to make one of these notebooks, but need to stabilize a useful design first.


You can download the PDF mockup here:

The mockup size is 8×8 inches, containing two designs side-by-side.

I suspect that the reformatted daygrid at the bottom is going to be too small to be useful. It feels a bit cramped overall. This design might work better at a lower time resolution for on-the-go notetaking rather than planning. Let me know what you think!


About this Article Series

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  1. penny 9 years ago

    i like this new layout, i’m going to play with it a bit. thank you for sharing it.

  2. Kevin 9 years ago

    I like it! One note: the left side doesn’t match the right. It’s missing the tick bubbles for the major task sections.

  3. Author
    Dave Seah 9 years ago

    Kevin: Yep! There are two versions. Some people like the task bubbles, some people don’t.

  4. Nicole 9 years ago

    I love this layout. The cramped daygrid is better for how I use the forms. Usually I end up with a lot of wasted space. I’m trying this one out now…

  5. Author
    Dave Seah 9 years ago

    Nicole: Thanks for the feedback! Let me know how it works out. Maybe I can make a split 4.25 x8.5 version to get a little more width in the day grid columns. Ideally, how much more space would you like?