The Art of Note Writing

The art of letter and note writing is fading out due to modern technology. Now it is easier and quicker to send an email via computer or a text message through your mobile phone than sit down and write a note as they used to do in years gone by. The article gives you instructions on the types, format of notes and strategies and tips on how to write a note.

Types of Note

There are various types of notes for different purpose and objectives, The following are common forms of notes.

  • Billet doux. In Victorian times this was the most popular form of note writing which was written by a prospective suitor expressing his love to the lady of his choice. It was always the male who wrote this type of note as it was not done for the lady to write it although she could send a note in reply.
  • Sick Note. This is signed by the doctor to hand to employers when the employee was considered unfit for work.
  • Thank You Notes. Children are taught from an early age to write a note to friends and relatives to thank them for presents, this is a tradition carried on into adulthood and is also used for wedding presents. University or research Notes. These come in four different types, linear, pattern, column and tabular.

Structure and Format of Notes

When writing your note, it is important to know the basic format and structure of different types of notes.

  • Billet Doux is a love letter, pure and simple. It should be kept short and to the point, saying you would like to call on the lady at a certain day and time if that is convenient. These days this is more likely to be done by text.
  • Sick Note is a standard form that the doctor fills in saying the patient is unfit to work for a period of time which the doctor fills in and signs and the patient lets his or her employer have it.
  • Thank you Note should be kept short and polite. Dear so and so, Thank you so much for your lovely present, I shall think of you whenever I use it, it was very kind of you to think of me.
  • Linear Notes. Conventional notes when attending a lecture or studying a book. Similar to a written essay facts are listed in sequence leaving a wide margin at the left to add further notes if necessary.
  • Pattern notes are like maps where you make drawings or patterns in different colors to stress different points. Column Notes. Using columns, however many are necessary, to keep the notes separate reading from left to right.

Note Writing Skills and Tips.

One of the key strategy for writing note is conciseness. Whatever type of note you are writing, make sure you write neatly. Other people may need to refer to your notes and must be able to read what you have written.

Do not use abbreviations that are only known to you for the same reason. If someone needs to gain information from your notes they need to understand what they mean so unless the abbreviations are universally known always write the word out in full. If taking notes at a lecture use a new sheet for each lecture and if there is a word you do not understand write it in capitals so you can look it up later.