The first text-editor in Linux I ever used was pico. Then I was introduced to emacs and remained using for awhile. Nowadays, vi(m) is my favorite and default text editor of choice. Anyway, the main point of this post is to how to start emacs in terminal-mode instead of graphical mode.
$ emacs -nw
That's it. -nw actually does the trick.
Reference: How to get started...