Best Way to Enter Notes for Books?

Question: Is it better to enter book notes directly to the book page or to the journal referencing the book page?

Background and further info:

I like to enter as many things as possible from within the Journal section of Logseq because I not only like knowing when the entries were made but it’s interesting to click on dates and see what else happened that day around the notes in an entry.

For this reason I have been attempting to NOT go to a book page and enter the notes on something I am reading directly on the book page.

What I’ve done so far, is created an outline on the book page of all the chapter headings before I delve into the book.

Then when I’m reading if I come up with something I would like to note or jot down, I do go to the journal page and write something like:

[[Book XXX]] ((Chapter 2))

Then indent and start writing my notes or thoughts

This then shows up with a reference next to the chapter on the Book page and when click on that it will open up right under that section in Logseq.

Here’s an example

This is something new I have tried in the last week or so. Prior to that I would just write the notes in the journal under the book title without the chapter and then would need to go through the backlinks.

Are there any downsides to this new method I am using?

What are the arguments for just putting everything directly into the page for the book directly instead of writing in the journal?

Again, I like putting everything in the journal because it’s efficient and I don’t have to do a ton of thinking - I can just write. BUT, I would like to make sure I am going to have an easy time later on retrieving things and am open to better suggestions.

NOTE: I do most of my reading on a Kindle or listen to audio-books or text to speech while doing other things, so I haven’t used much of the PDF feature in Logseq


I am a huge advocate for “everything in the daily notes page”, but…when it comes to books, I am a little different.

I will have a page for each book and in this page I will split it by section, maybe opening, middle, closing, or parts - usually not chapters as I think that is a little too granular and constricting.

As I am reading, I will add my notes to the book page in question. Why? I like to keep the book notes with the book because if not I think they would be too scattered over many daily notes pages which would lose its value to me. when I am reading, I only want to be concentrating on that, not see my DNP and think of the other stuff I have going on


You make a really good point on the granularity of using chapter headings. May be a bit too restrictive and not as useful when I want to go back to them.

Also, I might have different “headlines” that would make more sense than the given chapter names.

I think I have the “all over the place” thing under control by using the chapter heading block references in the journal, but you make good points for just putting it in the book page.

Thanks for your thoughts.

1 Like

You are very welcome. Completely agree on your last point - I did umm and ahh for a while on how I wanted it set up (DNP or specific book page). In the end I went with the book as the book is structured and specific. A bit like a course - I would rather have all of my notes on the course on the Course Page and not have to deal with the Linked section.

In the end, as long as the content is going in, the workflow depends on preference

But don’t you think, even though your notes are “scattered” among daily Journal entries, that, you can still retrieve only the book-related parts among them, if you click on the [[Book Title]] —assuming that you have created a new branch in your daily journal entries every time you wanted to write down some notes about the book “Book Title”.

Base reading: Resources to become a better learner

When it comes to a book (and not only), there are different types of notes:

  • about the book itself
    • they are facts
      • belong to the book’s page
    • their value is mostly for:
      • searching
      • statistics
    • they are meta-data, served best by:
      • properties in the first block of the book’s page
        • more useful when standardized
      • custom pseudo-properties in other blocks of the book’s page
  • about the book’s actual content
    • not of its structure or other meta-data
    • these are usually thoughts of the author
    • their value is mostly for outlining the book
      • served best by blocks in the book’s page
  • because of reading the book
    • these are thoughts of the reader, triggered by reading
      • belong to other pages
    • these can be high-value original knowledge

All those notes:

  • may begin in a journal
  • belong to a variety of pages
  • should not remain mixed forever

From Feedback on approach to studying information heavy texts :


Using a page to keep notes about a book:

  • is valid and fine, as long as it is about:
    • outlining the content of the book
      • Takes the form of a hierarchical structure, like a custom Table of Contents.
        • Like all hierarchies, it:
          • facilitates navigation
            • especially during learning
          • cannot produce any emerging value
    • capturing the book’s overall meaning in a concise way
      • This is mostly:
        • about highlights
        • for memory refreshing
          • potential flashcards
        • for communicating to potential readers
  • has nothing to do with:
    • journaling
      • The schedule for reading a book is irrelevant.
      • The actual date/time of reading a book is irrelevant.
    • knowledge management
      • The place/space of reading something is irrelevant.
      • Knowledge management is not:
        • book management
        • quotation management
      • Notes are associations of concepts, they are not lists of:
        • quotations
        • references
      • A book contains notes of its author.
      • The reader’s notes from reading the book and pondering:
        • may originate here
        • don’t belong here, but where they can provide leverage