Chapter 5: Journals

I’ll give you 3 guesses and the first two don’t count on what this chapter is about. Yup! It’s about journals.

Heather talks about how she hates suggesting people to “keep a journal” for their writing. Instead she likes to suggest getting “loose journal”. Keeping a journal makes it feel like you have to be careful with it, take care of it and studiously write in it every day.

Heather suggest a much relaxed way to take writers notes by basically suggesting that you use whatever you can find. A napkin you wrote on while at the restaurant and plan to put in a shoebox so you can find it later, a bunch of cheap notebooks that you’ll have in different areas of your house, a folder that holds a bunch of loose papers filled with your notes.

I do this as an artist. I need to have some sort of paper around just in case I need to sketch something. But I don’t have a super fancy sketchbook. More like a folder that holds all my doodles. Currently I have 3 sketch pads in my bag; a small one, a beat up looking larger one that I randomly doodle on, and one with nice paper for when I feel I might draw something that I might want to turn into a print. I also have sticky notes for those times where I need to sketch something out right away at work and look busy (luckily my current boss doesn’t get angry at me for doodling because she knows that’s how I think, listen, and problem solve).

Exercise 11

Buy a large journal, 8.5″x11, and keep it by your bed. You can also use a spiral bound notebook, for which you should pay no more than $.99. When you can’t sleep, or you are cranky and giving yourself a Time Out (it isn’t just for kids!), or when you are stuck in your writing life, or just feel like writing, you can get it out, get it down. Tomorrow when you wake up, don’t get out of bed without writing one sentence. Just one sentence. That’s all.

I hate mornings because they suck balls.