I think it comes from a couple different places:
- Like you, I have a reverence for the printed word. This makes writing in books difficult at times, because I feel like I'm defacing them, even though I'm not. I love buying used books that contain underlined text and intelligent comments in the margins and between lines.
- My background is more academic, and I'm used to reading critical editions, or editions that reference critical editions, which means they label text to give the precise location in the critical edition.
I don't think it adds any more time. Referencing that OO document again, how much longer does it take to start a line with:
189.2.5: This sentiment is also found in Raphael's works, and picked up again later by Ruskin in his Stones of Venice, which, of course influenced the Pre-Raphaelites._
than it does with:
This sentiment is also found in Raphael's works, and picked up again later by Ruskin in his Stones of Venice, which, of course influenced the Pre-Raphaelites._
It's just "three" numbers. Or, am I missing what you're asking? Are you asking if it takes more time to write in a separate document than it does directly in the book?
I do underline in the book too, but a lot of times, I want to say more than fits comfortably within the margins. And if it turns out I want to comment on a word or two on the same line, or another line just a bit lower in the same paragraph, then there's no room in the book.
This seems like a decent compromise. When I was college, I did all this with a separate notebook (but there, we weren't allowed to write in library books. OH! And that's another reason I started doing it this way. A lot of times, I was in the library reading reference material, including rare books. (In fact, the oldest book in my collection is from 1600s, and I just can't bring myself to write in it.)