Creating a regular book is like marking your favorites in a novel with the standout Amazon Kindle feature – except your personal one-stop knowledge base can also include lyrics. Singing, movie dialogs, poems, recipes, podcast recordings and any other inspiration you find in your reading and listening. Ordinary books aren’t a new concept: Copying your favorites from someone else’s work into your own annotated notebook is a standard exercise in Renaissance Europe and this idea can be traced back to Roman times.
But here in the modern digital connected world, you don’t have to keep everything in one physical location. With the right application, you can use your smartphone, tablet or computer to collect and synchronize new content for your collection – and use the search function later to find specific entries. Here’s how to get started with creating a digital buzzbook – or how to transform thoughtful notebooks and quotes you’ve been keeping.
If you’ve never made a regular book before, first find out how others have used them. The academic library, along with the museum, is home to many popular books and you can view them without even leaving the couch. John Milton’s popular book is available on the British Library site, and the personal notebooks of other writers and thinkers are easy to find with a web search.
The Yale Library scanned the pages of the usual history books in its arsenal, and the Harvard Library has several pages in its own online collection, as well as pictures of the popular book creation tutorials 17th century by John Locke, which is originally published in French. And the Internet Archive has hundreds of popular books digitized for browsing or borrowing, including one by Sir Alec Guinness.
Notes for your Notes
For simplicity’s sake, collecting your common entries in an online word-processing document is an option. If you find that approach difficult to use, consider the note-taking app that came with your phone – Apple Notes or Google Keep. Just enter quotes and other text whenever you want. To bypass typing or pasting, Google Keep can scan and transcribe text from images of book pages, and Apple’s Siri voice assistant or Google Assistant can create notes and dictate.
You can also use your note-taking application through your computer’s web browser, where it’s often easier to cut and paste items and apply text formatting. Your changes will update across all devices, as long as you’re signed in to the same Apple ID or Google Account everywhere.
Use a dedicated app
If you want to pre-order the note-taking app on your phone for your everyday life, a plethora of dedicated journal and notebook apps await you. Some apps include features like keyword tagging to help organize your popular books by subject or topic. Most apps offer the basic free version, but require a fee for certain features; For example, the Bear app for iOS and Mac devices requires a $ 15 annual subscription to sync between devices.
Those looking for details might appreciate Notion, an extensive writing and organizer app that includes page templates and a snipping tool for saving portions of a website in notes. Evernote, a longtime player in the popular mobile category, has its own Web Clipper templates and functionality, and an Apple Watch app.
Day One, the popular personal diary app for iOS-based hardware, has its own version of the Apple Watch and desktop. Daybook, another journal app, runs on Android, iOS, and web browsers – and works with Alexa, Bixby, and the Google Assistant so you can create voice entries or let them read aloud.
But if you just need a no-frills, distracting tool for text-based entries to your popular electronic book, there’s Simplenote. And it’s free.
Converting paper notebooks
What if you were someone who kept a regular book for many years but wanted to digitize it all without retyping it all? One method: Take a picture of each page and import the image into your note app, which also retains the look and feel of your original handwritten entries.
For Kindle readers who have marked passages in their e-books for years: You can see all of your highlights at https://read.amazon.com/notebook and decide which line you want to add to your popular book.