Do you journal? Does it seem daunting, useless, or just something writers do?
It doesn’t have to be.
I’m a little late to the party, but Bakari Chavanu created NaJoWriMo at the beginning of this year as a practice to concentrate on journal writing for 4 months of the year. I’ve been an avid journaler since age 11 (when I called it a diary), and back then, I didn’t know that journaling would help me write my first book.
Journaling is for everyone–it doesn’t matter how old you are, what gender you are, or what you do for a living.
There are lots of reasons to journal. It has nothing to do with whether you have the talent to write for a living.
Throughout the month, I’m blogging 20 questions from this month’s feature article on O magazine.
Question 3- Am I With the Right Person?
I was on the Chat Atlanta show a few weeks ago (click here to listen) and one of the things a panelists said is that a lot of people suffer in their relationships simply because they are not with the right person. I’m currently single but my stance is this: If you do not like the person that you’re with, if you do not share the same values, if you are not BOTH willing to do the work to better your communication, be understanding and compromise with each other, then you’re bound to be miserable.
Julie Orringer* describes a sense of peacefulness that comes over you in dating relationships when you’re with “The One.” I will let peace be the umpire of my spirit as well, as I wait to meet him.
Do you ever ask yourself this question? What is your conclusion?
Just received the April issue of O magazine in the mail (a little late–and got the March issue 2 days later!). The cover story is “20 Questions Every Woman Should Ask Herself Today!” You would get tired answering all 20 questions in one day, butI love to journal so I decided to blog the answers to those questions, one per day this month. This is a trend, since I wrote every day last April, too. (And by the way, I think these self-reflective questions are good for anyone-not just women.)
Question 1- Do I Examine My Life Enough?
Yes. I’m deep.
“Life is brief, but if you’re brave, it’s deep.” – Elissa Schappell*
I’m always thinking about how I feel about my circumstances, what my goals are, what’s coming up next, and where I want to be in my life 6 months, 1 year or more from now. Quarterly, I review my life plan, which assists me with covering the deeper issues and dreams at hand.
How often do you examine your life? What method do you use for self-examination?
* Elissa wrote the essay for Question 2, which I’ll cover next time.
TomorrowWikipedia: Tomorrow normally refers to the day after the present day. →
How would I describe my life in August 2012 in one word? Stressful. (I wrote a full entry in my journal that mentions a lot more stressful things than I’m willing to write in this post, but trust me, I’m happy to see September.)
Moving on Up and Going Out
I moved into a new home and took a mini-vacation.
Technically the moving part was in July, but as of August 1, I had been in the house for 3 days so I’m counting it here. As with any move, it takes time to get settled, get repairs and utilities in working order, and establish routines from the new location. I spent a weekend Savannah, GA perusing the tourist area around historic River St. and visited Tybee Island, Paula Deen’s restaurant Lady & Sons, and the highlight was a last-minute idea to her brother’s restaurant, Uncle Bubba’s. I will be back!
I Lightened Up
I performed in a local improv comedy show for the first time. Why improv?
Professional speakers Steve Berkun (author of Confessions of a Public Speaker) and Darren LaCroix have touted using improvisational techniques as a way to incorporate spontaneity and flexibility while doing public speaking. As a youth speaker, I have to not only educate and give information in a somewhat entertaining manner, but I don’t think of myself as being terribly humorous. The improv class proved to be a fun way to loosen up, trust myself onstage, and gain more self-confidence in extemporaneous speaking situations.
Three-ring binders of loose-leaf paper. Composition books. Diaries with locks.
A countless number of these notebooks and makeshift journals have held my innermost thoughts since I was 13 years old. These artifacts helped me gather my thoughts and get back into my teenage mindset as I began the process of writing my book, which is for teen girls of today. It was amazing for me to read through all of my thoughts and feelings, as I wrote in vivid detail about the different situations I went through. To see my growth and transformation. To see the types of people I was drawn to, and how I let them treat me. To see how I felt about myself, my family, and God. To remember things that I forgot. To realize all that I’ve learned since then. Sometimes I wish I could go back in time with everything I know now, because I would have made better choices. Continue reading “Why I Write”→
I am a technical writer who works at home full-time. I am often forgotten or ignored by subject matter experts (SMEs) when it comes to meetings or getting answers to my emails because I live hundreds of miles away, and colleagues never see me in person.
I have a presentation called “The Invisible Writer.” Some writers come to the presentation thinking I’ll discuss how to get SMEs to pay attention to them and cooperate with them within the office. I know these issues are present when working in the same building as the SMEs too, but I have a different perspective now.
Don’t get me wrong—being “invisible” in the corporate world has its perks. I enjoy wearing comfortable, casual clothing everyday. I can get up and go to my desk without quickly having to wash up, change into clothes, and rush out the door into traffic. (Mind you, I DO wash up and change clothes—I just don’t have to do it before noon if I don’t feel like it.) I don’t get lonely, wishing I had co-workers around me, and I don’t have a lot of distractions at home.
I never heard of technical writing until my third year of college, but I have always loved writing, and English was my best subject in high school. I liked creating short stories, and one year, I passed around a composition notebook so that my friends and I could take turns writing scenes for a fictional soap opera. It was a hit with us!