Days 5, 6, and 7, and Why I Can’t Journal Instead of Blog.

Some of it I already told you: journals are supposed to be for absolute candor.  I can’t have absolute candor if I am sharing the pages on my blog.  What is public vs. private?  Apparently, lots.  And some of you might think that I’m pretty open on my blog, and that there’s really not a lot that I would want or need to keep private, and I applaud your close reading.  That’s what I thought, too.

But the truth is, old habits die hard, and journaling can’t be a productive exercise for me if I do not feel as though I am 100% uncensored, safe, and private.

These are two separate habits of mind, two separate objectives.

Things I’ve learned that led me to the decision to end the journal blog early, to blog here, and journal not here:

  1. It is easier for me to start stories in a journal than sitting at the keyboard.  Once they have begun, typing them over into Word and continuing is easier.  But writing to a prompt in a blank office document?  Not my cuppa.
  2. I process information very, very differently via type and handwriting. I do not think so much in my journal. I spew.  When at the keyboard, I have a list, and strategies to stay organized and focused.
  3. I do not need these with the old school handwriting practice, and in fact, when I was trying to apply my blogging thinking space at my journal, I was very frustrated and edgy.  It was obnoxious to have to try to write for myself and for everyone else at the same time.
  4. I forgot how obsessed I am with penmanship.
  5. Both kinds of writing practice are incredibly important for me, and are useful in separate compartments of my mind and my conscious thinking, though they help each other without any of my own intention.  It’s like they’re holding a conference call in my mind of which I am blissfully unaware.  It’s easy to ignore how much writing development occurs at the subconscious level.

So here are the last of the pages, and thank [insert deity/deities of your choice here] tomorrow I can start sharing this stockpile of excellent blog posts I’ve been stewing.  It’s going to be a good blog week here at April Line Writing.  Stay tuned.

Pages 16-17
Pages 18-19
Pages 20-21
Pages 22-23
Page 24

And oh yeah!  There is no 2.11.12, I didn’t journal that day.

The second entry 2.12.12 here, that’s the freewrite response to the Tin House writing prompt. Here’s the winner from last week’s prompt (it was about shoes).  I’m’a clean it up and put it in a word document.  Might not even be recognizable when I email it to the pepole tomorrow.  But there it is, and enjoy.

Four (or more) last things:  Here are some links I would’ve put in the entry from 2.10.12:

Michael Chabon, University of Pittsburgh, The New Yorker, Bullfrog Brewery, Alabaster, Grey Gallery, The Pajama Factory, Bavarian Barbarian.


Author: April Line Writing

Writing about whatever the f*ck I want.

2 thoughts on “Days 5, 6, and 7, and Why I Can’t Journal Instead of Blog.”

  1. I think you were off to a good start with the “journaling.”* Learning new skills takes practice and discipline. I particularly liked the bit about the the 4 beers. I laughed out loud when I got to the PS. blue cloud.

    *Until this little venture of yours I had no idea there was such thing as “journaling” movement of any kind. It seems weird to me. I guess I am a “journaler.” I sometimes write, sometimes draw but I always have a blank book with me. Maybe I wouldn’t be considered a “real” “journaler” because I only use black wire bound drawing books or blank Moleskins that fit in my purse (No lines for me. I want the blank sheet, the blank screen.)

    Also, I beg to differ that a blog is where you should expose all. Blogs are public not private. They are not the same as a diary. (Now I am thinking: how is it that some movement stole the word “journal” from us? When I was in elementary school, “I kept a diary” but by the time I was in high school “I kept a journal.” In my mind a journal is more sophisticated, a place where you write down what happens to you but also critique what happens to you. A journal is writing, not drawings.)

    Anyhow, I keep a journal (writing) and I keep sketch books (drawing and notes. Notes are not to be confused with writing — just a place to jot down an idea that you can write about later).

    1. Thanks for the thoughtful comment, Sue. But I think you misread a couple of things.

      First, I think that I said that the journal is private, the blog is public, and that I do not, in fact, tell all in my blog…that one of the things trying to use my journal publicly taught me is that the journal is for where I can be utterly uncensored, and the blog is very much a public medium, with the need of code names and such, and that my thought process during the two types of writing is really different–usefully different, but different.

      Second, journaling is absolutely not a new thing for me. I have had a journal forever. As long as I could write, I wrote a journal. I filled dozens of single subject notebooks when I was a kid, then in high school, I switched to sketch books where I drew and wrote, but always as separate activities. I don’t think it matters what you use to journal, moleskiens or spiral bound notebooks or whatever works. Since college, I normally use those half page sized blank sketchbooks. I like the toothiness of the paper, and the way it feels to write on those pages with any writing instrument. Lately, I’ve been trying to use some of the nice, pretty, bound journals that people have bought for me over the years, or that I have bought myself. But I really like the toss-away half-sheet sketchbooks best.

      I was trying to use the journal in my blog because I’m giving an illustrated journaling workshop in a couple of weeks, and I thought that scanning the pages of my journal into my blog would hold me accountable to myself to have sample work to take the the workshop. I started a new one because it had to be safe for everybody to see. I am not aware of a journaling movement, but there are lots of blogs and websites from artists who “teach” illustrated journaling. I thought I was missing something, but it turns out, I’m probably not. I am constantly surprised by the things people want to be taught to do (like journal and make greeting cards), but things they think they have native powers of (like writing. Short stories for example. This is a long story for another day).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s