Evolution of a Journal
Welcome to the Scribbler’s Blog Hop! A dozen fabulous writers are discussing their writing habits and what role their journals play in the process. Please stop by and check out each blog listed at the end of this post.
Evolution of a Journal
This is my FIRST writing journal. The first entry is dated January 1992. My sister came home from college with a short story from one of her classes and I was amazed that someone could just make that up and decided I had to try it for myself. I carried this little journal everywhere and wrote down every passing thought and too many incredibly awful poems. I even signed the bottom of each page. Why? Because I was thirteen and it seemed like the thing to do.
* * *
After the pocket book, I graduated to full grown spiral notebooks which I filled with dark poetry and even darker short stories. In high school I drew designs on the back covers of the journals. I would draw during class lectures or when I was stumped on a story or poem. I worked slowly, sometimes taking months to fill the entire cover. My daughter discovered these journals a few months ago and has now started drawing similar patterns on her own notebooks. (being a mom is so awesome!)
* * *
And now that I’m all grown up (no short jokes!), I’ve moved on to bound journals. I always loved the look of them, but I’d never purchased one because I loved the ease of my spirals. For Christmas last year my daughter bought me the Wicked Witch journal because Wicked is one of my favorite books (not because I’m a witch or anything). And you know what? I fell in love with it. By April it was almost full so for Mother’s Day she gave me the black journal. I use these only for my flash fiction. Handwriting is time consuming and quite painful considering my tendonitis, but I love to write my flash by hand.
I find writing long hand to be almost therapeutic. I think it has something to do with the slower pace of the writing. You have to concentrate on what you’re writing and the words somehow feel more permanent than the typed words. If I mistype a word or decide to change one in a computer file, the original word is deleted and never seen again. No one knows what the original thought was, not even myself. But the written journal holds every mistake, every change or twist that develops in the story. It’s a complete record of the creative process. In my newest journal I’ve even started writing the inspiration for the story on the facing page. As you can see here with my story, “The Storm”, which was based on a Six Word Sunday prompt from EasilyMused.
I also have several spirals I use to make notes or jot down ideas for my novels. I have over a dozen spirals on my desk. Some I’ve had for years, some only have a few pages of notes. I’m constantly buying new ones, some with crazy designs, some with simple, solid-color covers, some skinny, some multi-subject, it doesn’t really matter. I always have one or more with me and I still carry a small one in my purse because you never know when inspiration will strike. No matter when or where I purchased it, or how full it is or isn’t, I never throw them away. I have almost twenty years worth of journals in my closet. I love to go back through them every few years because it’s not just the evolution of a journal it’s also the evolution of a writer.
* * *
Please stop by the other blogs on the tour and see how and why other writers use their journals:
Anne Michaud – My Fabulous Cohost and Mastermind behind the Blog Hop