Friday, November 6, 2009
Maybe no writing is garbage writing — okay, some is — but some thoughts and emotions need a place, just not in your stories. Those are about others, unless yours is an autobiography. Journals give personal musings somewhere safe to go. And maybe they will become fodder for a story — the stuff memoirs are made of.
Journaling, like any discipline, also keeps your writing mind limber through regular use. The more we write, the easier, usually, writing is. Easier to start, easier to keep going and easier to see mistakes, provided we review what we've written.
Another perk of journaling is its ability to stop time, so that we can pause and reflect. Poet and professor John Leax said in his sabbatical journal, "I need to remind myself writing poetry is not a career … It is rather a vocation, a calling and a discipline." There's something about sitting down with whatever you use when you write for yourself — I usually use a pen and a spiral pad — you rediscover your life, who you are. And that's worth writing about.
To put today's musing into action, see the writing tip at the top of the list and let me know how it goes.