Journal writing is a favored practice of writers, a centuries-old occupation around the world. Why do writers keep journals? What do they write in their journal? Should you keep a journal? I think that anyone who enjoys writing should keep a journal. Take a look and see how you might benefit from this activity.
Journal writing can serve many purposes.
A journal is akin to a diary, in that it is generally a â€œprivateâ€ book, where you put down thoughts and ideas, ponder on life, write down a joke you heard today, mull over a problematic situation, or maybe just plain vent. Journal writing can give you an opportunity to express yourself on topics you may not have the chance or inclination to talk about with someone else. This type of journal writing may, over time, give you a fresh perspective on yourself and others.
Which brings us to another benefit of journal writing. Ultimately, journal writing is therapeutic. A journal can be stream of consciousness. After all, your audience is you. You can express yourself exactly as you feel. You tend not to mince words, as you might with your boss who’s just unfairly chastised you. Journal writing is an uncensored activity, giving you an uncensored look at yourself.
You can also approach journal writing as a developmental exercise. If you’d like to improve your writing skills, keeping a journal helps you hone your skills.
Whether you’re a student or experienced writer, give yourself a daily writing challenge. For example, a student might benefit by writing a short composition each day, to improve skill and speed for English assignments. A more experienced writer may find persuasive pieces an asset in copy writing. A writer fascinated with character development as an element of the novel can use journal writing to explore different techniques.
You can use journal writing as pure relaxation and therapy. Everyone’s got issues that particularly pique their curiosity or get their goat! A journal is the perfect medium to explore your own mind.
Perhaps you’re a great cook and read every food magazine you can find. Maybe you’d like to write a cook book. Get a journal and your recipes, and write magazine-style articles about each. This could be a gift for a child going off to college, your personal family cookbook, or the next Junior League cookbook. You may even end up enjoying the project so much, you’ll submit one of your articles to a magazine for publication.
Poets are usually introspective and philosophically oriented. Journal writing helps you focus and refine your thoughts such that a new poem results from the musings.
Whatever your interests, journal writing can be educational, therapeutic, and a lot of fun. A journal can be as simple as a spiral notebook or as elegant as a leather-bound formal journal. If you enjoy writing, give it a shot. You may find you have a lot to say!