Part 1: For Players
One of the biggest tips we recommend over and over again is that you need to make your notebook work for YOU. Whether you're the type of gamer who enjoys taking simple, bullet point notes or who enjoys journalling from the perspective of your character, you need a way to lay those scribbles out in a way that will make sense to you in the future. This comes in especially handy when you're trying to do things such as remember what NPCs you met three sessions ago or when it was that you encountered that group of gnolls just outside of town.
One way of doing this, is to create a layout (or a spread, in bujo terms) for each session you participate in. Here are some tips on creating your own layout, which can easily be adjusted to suit whatever you might need to capture.
Where do I start?
Then, decide how you'd like to lay those things out in a manner that will remain consistent every session. This will allow you to easily thumb through your notebook to easily reference it. For example, you might choose to always place your date, session number, and XP gained on the very top of your layout, so that you can flip through your notebook and quickly land on the last session when your party got XP.
Okay, what else do I add?
Creating a layout (or spread) is an excellent way to organize your session notes. It only takes a couple of minutes to set up, so you can create it ahead of your session or make it up quickly just before gaming begins. Either way, it's a great tool that can help provide you with a consistent focus on what you have decided is important to remember, especially during those moments when you're swept up with whatever shenanigans might be going down!