Hi I am somewhat new to guitar and want to be able to write/improv in scales. I am not sure what to memorize though. Can i get away with memorizing simply scale positions and building them off just knowing the notes of the low E string, or should i memorize every note on the fretboard know what notes are in each scale and try think fast enough to improv with them. Not sure how clear I was on explaining the problem but any advice is appreciated.
Don't memorize every note, just the naturals. When you get the naturals down and know how to construct a scale, you should be good. Start on the High E. Once you have that down, you have memorized the notes on both the High E and Low E.

I'd learn how to construct scales, the scale shapes, and the naturals on the fretboard. When you play scales, say the name of the note when you play it; that will reinforce your knowledge.

Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
Knowing the name and the sound of a note is important. But ,don't try to memorize the fret board note by note looking at a chart. Knowing how a particular note sound is the most important thing.

Play the scales while you pronounce the note names. You can do it in your head if you want.

Also you can play chord progressions with movable chords. As an example, you can think that you're going to play seventh chords in the Key of E to 12-bar-blues-progression. So, you will look for the root notes while you're playing. When you do this, actually you're improvising though it's very basic. You can practice every key like this. So, this will lead you to know all the notes in the 6th, 5th and 4th strings.

Remember not to take it so hard. Give it more time. Play stuff knowing the notes. (Learning how to sight-read is the best shortcut in my opinion.)

Good luck.
turn any scale you are learning into your warm up, while warming up remember what the 3 is what the 5 is on the string, warm up for a few days it should be easy to remember anything.

then practice with the scale(s) = saved to long term memory = win.