There are so many creative ways to journal beside writing in a notebook. But before I talk about different ways to journal, I wanted to share some good news!
Dawn Herring, host of #JournalChat live on Twitter, every Thursday at 5pm, and author of Refresh Journal, sent me an e-mail the other day regarding my post, Journal Writing & Memoir: Using Your Journals for Research.
I am delighted to inform you that your post, which was chosen for #JournalChat Pick of the Day on Friday, 8/31/12, has also been chosen for #JournalChat Pick of the Week! That essentially means that your post will be the journaling resource for next week’s #JournalChat Live which will take place on 9/6/12 at 5 EST/2 PST for all things journaling on Twitter. Our topic will be Your Journaling: It’s All in the Details! as we discuss the importance of including information that informs in our journal entries. I love the categories you offered of scene, reflection and context which can give us new motivation to include more details in our entries, especially concerning conversations, conflicts, and other important life situations we experience….
Your post will be linked on my blog, on the social networks and in Refresh Journal, my weekly e-journal, as #JournalChat Pick of the Day and Pick of the Week.
Pretty awesome! I would love for you to join us Thursday at 5pm on Twitter for the live chat. I’ll be there! Use the hash tag #JournalChat and let’s all talk about journaling and how it can be used in our writing.
On to the rest of our scheduled production….
As I’ve shared before, I love to journal and have been journaling over 20 years (wow…has it really been that long?). My preference is writing in decorative journals (no two covers are alike). The most important aspect of journaling, though, is to find a way that reflects you. Just because someone else does it one way, doesn’t mean you have to follow suit. Journaling is as diverse as we are. There’s no “one size fits all” (which I hate, by the way…have you ever seen those “one sizes?” Who do they fit…the munchkins?). No two journals are ever the same, not even from the same person!
Here are some ideas for different ways to journal:
Traditional Journal – Writing in a journal is the most traditional method. You can pick from a gigantic variety of blank journals (check out the ones at Barnes and Nobles!) or use the infamous Moleskine notebooks.
Art Journal – Who said all journals had to be written? If you have an inner artist (no skill required), paint or draw your life or use whatever medium of your choice. You can add words if you feel like it, but they’re not necessary.
Catch All Journal – This is a book or notebook that is kept with you at all times. Write down your random thoughts, grocery lists, ideas, etc. This book can provide later journal fodder, or just be a way for recording daily life. Get something unique, and that you won’t mind keeping with you all the time. A good size is 5×8 or smaller.
Scrapbook Journal – Don’t let scrapbooking intimidate you. Its a photo-journal, that’s it. Add words, embellishments, or just slap some photos on a page like an album. Do it page by page, or buy scrapbooking albums. Great for the family historian!
Favorite Quotes Journal -Everyone has those quotes that they love. Write them down, and say a few words on what speaks to you about the quote. Is the speaker a hero of yours? Is it something a favorite family member said over and over again?
Family Journals – Keep a notebook on a table or counter for family members to write in. Make sure that each family member writes their name next to or on top of their entry! This is a great way to keep a family history as well, and children love hearing the stories.
Digital Journal – If you don’t fancy writing, why not type it up on a computer. One can add scanned media to entries as well as photographs. You can take this a step further and start your own blog. Blogs are really just journals online. There are many sites available dedicated to setting you up. Most have settings so you can adjust the level of privacy you require. Some people use social media sites as a journal. Be warned however that writing about your inner most feelings and publishing this in the public domain will always carry more associated risk. Personally I prefer to have more control over who has access to my personal information.
Video Journal – As long as you are comfortable in front of a camera this is a very time efficient method of keeping a journal. It is possible to upload all your videos to a site like You Tube which would give you somewhere to “store” the files. One can also mark your videos as “personal” which would mean only you have access to them.
Audio Journal – Some people are better verbal communicators than writers. Voice recorders are fairly inexpensive these days so if you fancy the idea of journaling with audio then there is always this route.
– If you’re a techie fan, the app Evernote is a great way to create a digital journal with photos, video, audio, written, etc. It allows you to access it from your smartphone, ipad, or computer, regardless of your location. Click here
for details on the most straightforward way to use it for journaling.
Many of these ideas can be mixed and matched. Who said you only had to stick with one method? There are thousands of ways to journal; experiment to find which one works for you. It’s your journal, make it reflect you.
What ways have you tried journaling? What’s your preferred method and why?