Many people keep journals as a record of the happenings of the day and their feelings about them. Writers use journals in a different way. Instead of recording what happened each day, they write in a journal on a regular basis to find out more about themselves. They use their journal as a place to polish their voice and keep it strong.
You can do anything you want in your journal. It�s your own space. There are no rules or structure except what you decide on. The main purpose of a journal is to help you get used to putting ideas on paper.
Ways to Get Started
- Take time at the end of each day to record images, events, and scenes that have stuck with you
- Write down details you recall
- Make notes about other images or events the day�s images and events suggest to you
- Explore what the things you remember tell you about yourself
- Write freely for ten minutes using an image, event, or scene from the day as a starting point
- Reread what you wrote on other days and develop ideas that strike you
Use your journal as a place to
- play with words or phrases
- tell stories from different points of view
- compose a brief autobiography
- express opinions on issues
- apply different tones (for example: humorous, tragic, animated, dry, somber) to your writing
- create dialogue
- copy the style of other writers
- write a letter to yourself, to someone else, or to no one in particular
- review books you have read or films you have seen
If you keep a journal faithfully, you will find that it is more than a place to practice writing. It is a place to store your personal experience. And every good writer knows that personal experience is the most valuable resource for writing.