10 Reasons I Prefer Digital Journal Writing Over Pen and Paper

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There are lengthy debates about pen and paper versus digital journal writing, with the former still the preferred method of most journal and diary writers. As I write in the introduction of my forthcoming book, I have used both writing methods for journal writing, and I can honestly say I don’t feel or see a difference in the content my journal writing, though there are significant differences of course in how I write using a computer, and more specifically, how I write using Day One. I almost must add that I rarely write anything by hand anymore, because typing is so much more efficient, and believe or not, less painful than writing long hand. But I’m not digital journal writing snob. Continue reading

Join Me on #JournalChat This Sunday


I’m so looking forward to being a guest on Dawn Herring’s monthly #JournalChat session on Twitter. I participated in the chats a few times this year, and this Sunday I will be her special guest.

The chat will begin about my blog post, Writing and Talking Back to Your Family Members in Your Day One Journal, but as usual we will venture off into various other topics about journaling.

If you’re an avid journal keeper, or if you’re interested in starting a journal, #JournalChat is a great way to get ideas from experienced and dedicated journal writers about journaling.

To participate in the chat, sign onto Twitter at the scheduled time and do a search for “#JournalChat.” Use the same hashtag in your tweets while participating in the discussion.

Look forward to seeing you there.

7/7/14 Update

Here’s a transcript of the Twitter chat.

Writing and Talking Back to Your Family Members in Your Day One Journal (Journaling Prompts Included)

Journal_promptsThere’s probably no better place to talk about or “talk back to” family members than in your journal or diary. The journal is the perfect space and outlet to write about your parents, spouse, children, or extended family members. Some journal entries about family members are like snapping happy family photos of memorable moments, birthdays, and celebrations, while other entries are expressions of anger, and moments of torment, sadness, and misunderstandings.

With Day One, you may want to tag non-private journal entries as “family,” or with specific names of family members, while other family entries are tagged “private” for never sharing, or even perhaps deleting one day. Remember, tagged entries are a great way to filter entries and export to PDF for sharing and archiving. (Note: see my guest post article on EasyJournaling.com about keeping a public and private journal. Continue reading

What Tweeps Are Saying About Keeping a Journal

What tweeps are sayingabout journaling

Because I’m researching and writing about journal writing, I follow a Twitter search for “journal writing” to see what Twitter users are saying about the subject.

The following is a collection of representative tweets that express reasons for keeping a journal—particularly for how journal writing is a secure, private place to reflect and express one’s emotions.

If you do a search yourself, you’ll be pleased to see how many Twitter users are devoted journals keepers.


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Why I’m Sooooo Jazzed About Canva.com

If you browse the past entries of my blog, sadly you will see that it was a ghost town for over a year, and I just recently I started writing more posts on a regular basis. It’s not because I find blogging a waste of time, but it’s because I’ve been busy with regular writing jobs.

But in the last few weeks I’ve re-committed to blogging more, and to be honest it’s not just because I’m blogging my forthcoming book, but also because I’m soooooo jazzed about using the graphic design site, Canva.com. Actually, I confess that a few of my recent blog posts were influenced by a design I created Canva.

Canva allows users to create custom graphic designs completely from scratch, or choosing from hundreds (maybe thousands!) of themes created for social networking sites including Pinterest and Facebook, blogging sites like this one, as well as for presentations, posters, business cards, photo collages, and invitations.

(Note: Canva is still only available via beta invites. I have two invites left for anyone who wants one. Just send me your email address.)

Canva includes plenty of instructions on how to get started creating your own designs, so there’s no need to explain that here. Instead, I want to share about how I use the site, and how you too might find it useful.

Learning Designs

First off, I am by no means a designer. The few books I’ve read on the subject include the classic Non-Designers DesignBook, by Robin Williams (a book that breaks down basic principles of design in a way that anyone can understand), and Jim Krause’s Design Basic Index, which is also useful for browsing ideas and design techniques. I have several other design books on my bookshelf, but quite honestly I have not had time to read them much.

Canva.com is also about learning design as you create projects. So far the site includes twelve interactive tutorials, plus more tips on its blog that help you understand how graphic design works and what techniques you can try in your own projects.

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Start Your Day With Morning Pages and Experience What Difference It Makes


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When I was struggling through a very difficult time in my life, I stumbled upon Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity. I was and still don’t consider myself a spiritual person—at least not in a religious sense, but when I started writing what Cameron calls “morning pages,” I did indeed go through a process of self-discovery in ways I had not done before. The daily writing process helped me face and overcome some fears and challenges I was experiencing at the time by freeing my mind of useless worry and anxiety.

“Working with morning pages, we began to sort through the differences between real feelings, which are often secret, and our official feelings, those on the record for public display.”
—Julia Cameron

In her book, Cameron advocates producing at least three pages of writing a day, in longhand, and in a strictly stream-of-conscious flow—with no concern for grammar, spelling, or continuity. I contend morning pages can also be typed, but more about that a little later. Continue reading