The Art of Taking Notes: From Fiction Books to Meetings

Tara H

Hatched by Tara H

Feb 21, 2024

3 min read


The Art of Taking Notes: From Fiction Books to Meetings


Taking notes is a valuable practice that helps us retain information, analyze our thoughts, and stay organized. Whether it's jotting down thoughts while reading fiction or capturing important points in a business meeting, the process of note-taking has its own unique benefits. In this article, we will explore the different approaches to note-taking, discuss the advantages and disadvantages of paper and digital notes, and provide actionable advice to optimize your note-taking experience.

Note-Taking in Fiction Books:

One common question among avid readers is whether they should take notes while reading fiction. Many individuals find it helpful to write down their feelings, thoughts, and quotes that resonate with them. This practice not only enhances their reading experience but also provides a personal record of their journey through the story. For complex narratives like the Game of Thrones series, note-taking becomes essential to keep track of numerous characters, side stories, and places. Similar to War and Peace, taking notes in fiction books can make reading easier by helping readers remember names, places, and concepts.

The Paper vs. Digital Dilemma:

When it comes to note-taking, the debate between paper and digital notes is an ongoing one. Each method offers its own set of advantages and considerations. Digital notes, for instance, are easily editable, searchable, and can be accessed from multiple devices. They also allow for the incorporation of multimedia elements like images and recordings. On the other hand, handwritten notes engage motor skills, which can aid in recall and comprehension. Furthermore, the tactile experience of writing on paper can be enjoyable for some individuals. To get the best of both worlds, it may be beneficial to combine these approaches based on the context and purpose of your notes.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Divide and Conquer: When taking meeting notes on paper, try dividing each page into two sections - notes on the left side and action points on the right side. This separation allows for clarity and easy reference. If you find the action column to be too spacious, consider switching the division direction from vertical to horizontal.
  • 2. Digitize with Ease: Utilize camera apps to capture whiteboard drawings and other visual content during meetings. These apps often come with features that auto-adjust, filter, and save the images as either JPEG or PDF files. By digitizing your notes, you can easily share and store them for future reference.
  • 3. Integrate with Task Management: To ensure that action points from meetings are not forgotten, incorporate a system for transferring them to your task management tool. This could involve flagging the text with keywords like "TODO" or "Q" during the note-taking process and then transferring the action points to your preferred task management system after the meeting. By seamlessly integrating your notes with your task management workflow, you can effectively follow up on action items.


Whether you're taking notes while reading fiction or capturing important information during meetings, note-taking is a valuable practice that enhances comprehension, aids in recall, and keeps you organized. The choice between paper and digital notes depends on personal preference and the context of your note-taking. By combining the advantages of both methods and following actionable advice such as dividing your notes, digitizing visuals, and integrating with task management tools, you can optimize your note-taking experience and make the most out of your valuable insights.

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