Sunday, 30 January 2011

Famous Diary - Exceprt

Entry from Virginia Woolf's Diary
September 13, 1925

Entry from Virginia Woolf's Diary

P. S. Don't forget - February Journaling Challenge starts from Tuesday, and a prompt for the day will be posted each morning. 

Friday, 28 January 2011

Does Handwriting Matter?

Remembrance Sunday

Journaling on actual, paper journals is a very tactile experience. It's a concentration of and connection to whole of your being in that one process, where you transfer your emotions and thoughts from your heart and brain to a piece of paper. So does it matter what the end result looks like? How is the handwriting in your journals? Are you pouring the words out as fast as possible, regardless of its legibility or are you careful, slow writer who thinks before writing? Or are you naturally speedy and organised? Do you try to change your handwriting? Does it change by itself depending on what you write? Do you care about the prettiness of your script or tidiness?

For me, legibility is definitely important. If I can't read my own writing, it seems a waste of time to have written it in the first place. I naturally write tidy so it's okay, and fortunately I can write almost as tidily while on the bus or train etc. There are times when my handwriting goes rubbish - but it's usually if I have to stop writing for some reason (like get off the bus) and want to finish the sentence, or if I am writing about some strong emotional issue and really want to get the feelings out as soon as possible. I would love to do old fashioned calligraphy, but I have no idea how to do that, so I stick to normal handwriting.

What about you? Share your views on handwriting.

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Moleskine Pen Test - Results

About two months ago, I did a post on testing several pens for Plain Moleskine. Having used them now, here is my result. 

Uniball Signo 207, 0.7
It was okay on Moleskine, but it actually turned out to be absolutely perfect for my Travel Journal. So I stopped using it in Moleskine. 0.7 nib works better on thicker pages. 

Pilot G-Tec - C4
Definitely better suited to drawing. Too fine for continuous and speedy writing. It's not bad, but it just doesn't flow as smoothly as I would like. As most of what I do is write, I won't be buying any more of these.

Pilot G2-0.38
Good pen, but again, bit too fine for my purpose. This is the one I am currently using, and I am almost out of the ink. But even after the usage, it's not completely smooth flowing. 

Pilot G2-0.5
PERFECT. I love it. This is definitely THE PEN for Plain Moleskines. I believe it so much that I have bought packs of 12 refills for my Black and Blue pens. I know someone mentioned in the comments in the Test post that after some usage the ink will flow smooth (I had complained that it wasn't), and they were right. After I used it for a bit, it was perfect. Easy to hold, fast to write, flows on the page, and doesn't mess up handwriting. I can see now why everyone always associates this pen with moleskines.

Pilot G2-0.7
Okay, but same principle as Uniball Signo. 0.7 is slightly too thick for thin pages of Plain Moleskines. It's usable, but it's better suited to thicker pages of other journals. 

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Check Out My Interview On Keeping A Journal

I did an interview for Kristin at Journaling Saves about keeping a journal. Check it out

Sunday, 16 January 2011

February Journaling Challenge

I have some exciting news. My good friend, Karin and I have decided to do a February Journaling Challenge. We hope you will join us, and participate.
Journaling is not about rules, so we have kept that to minimum with only one rule:
All you have to do is follow a daily prompt, and do ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING YOU WANT WITH IT. You can do an art journal page, drawing, writing, doodling, poetry, fiction, whatever you want.
We have specifically selected prompts that could be used in a variety of ways, because even Karin and I are approaching this Journaling Challenge from very different sides. Karin's main form is mixed media journal, and mine is writing. So as you can imagine, our entries and our interpretation of the prompts are likely to be very different.
You can join us, and do whatever appeals to you.
We will post prompts daily on both our blogs.
As I said - journaling is not about rules. So I will share some of my pages, depending on what I do with those prompts. Some of the entries may be too personal to share. Karin is planning to share all her pages. Our entries will be posted on our respective blogs.
If you want to share yours with us, please contact us, and we will be happy to post them on our blogs. Even if you don't want to show your entries, just join us on this amazing Journaling journey, where you devote the shortest month of the year - only 28 days - to journaling every day. You can do as much or as little you want, but I believe that at the end of the month, you will feel happier or at least more insightful for this exploration.

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Moleskine Protective Bag

I promised Nofretiri ages ago that I will post a picture of my cute moleskine bag. Finally here it is. And since I delayed, for a bonus, I am also posting a picture of the bag (present from my sister) that I am using for my filofax.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Creating the Space for Journal Writing

Do you journal as much as you want to? Perhaps you don't journal at all, but would like to. Whatever your situation, I hope this post will help you. This is about creating physical space as well as emotional space.

When keeping a journal becomes a second nature, all most of us need is to pick up our journal and a pen and start scribbling. Location - as long as relative privacy is ensured - doesn't matter, nor does noise or any other distractions. The world surrounding us becomes part of our journaling experience, and yet we are not distracted by it, because we are immersed in the journaling process.

But what if you are not yet at that stage? What if Journaling for you is not a second nature, but rather a regular habit that you are trying to cultivate, a hobby you are trying to develop, or simply a necessity to share your thoughts? If that is you - then sometimes, you may find that you don't want to journal. Either you can't be bothered, because it's too inconvinient to go find that journal, find a comfortable place to write, find a right environment etc.

This is where issue of space comes in.

Physical Space
Keep it somewhere you can have easy access. Ideally near a place you would generally journal. I.e. in your desk, on the coffee table

Make sure you feel comfortable with the level of privacy about this place. I recommend keeping it out of sight, even if your family respects your privacy. Even under another book would do. Why tempt people to open it by shoving your journal under their noses?

If you are able, carry it with you and write whenever you get a chance. You may find writing in it in odd moments, capturing moments of your day that might otherwise go unrecorded.

Make it easy on you. If you have to get your journal out from a back of a wardrobe every time, and digging it out takes you ten minutes, you are unlikely to write regularly.

Emotional Space
What if you feel so overwhelmed with emotional issues that it's too difficult to write? Or perhaps you think you can't write. That's when creating emotional space comes in useful.

If you are dealing with emotional issues that are having impact on your life, on your relationships, journaling could help you deal with them. It is not a substitute for professional help if the situation requires it, but it can be a great self-help tool anyway.

First thing to keep in mind - Start Slow.

It's okay if you don't feel capable of expressing all your feelings by writing. It's okay if you don't feel at ease about exposing your fear or your opinions. It's okay if you don't feel comfortable writing something that could make you vulnerable if someone else read it.

Start slow.

Write what you do feel comfortable about.

Write a list of things you fear. Write a list of things you wish would change. Write a list of things you are grateful about. Or everyday, simply write about your day, and at the end of it, write what you wish you could have done differently.

There will come a time when you can decide to act on it. To do something different. To change habits and behaviours that are keeping your trapped in your present emotional state. Or perhaps it's other people. Write about those people. Evaluable your feelings. Is it really them? Or is it your intepretation of their actions? If it is them, what can you do? Is it something you can fix by open, honest conversation or do those people need to be cut off from your life?

None of these are easy issues. But creating emotional space is about honesty with your self. You must face your emotions if you are to deal with them. Unless you know the root of what's troubling you, and the root cause for your life not being the way you like it to be, you cannot even begin to solve it. Of course not everything in life is in our control, but then journaling will help you understand and hopefully accept that.

Happy Journaling!

Monday, 3 January 2011

Journaling Goals for 2011

It wouldn't do not to have some new goals for this year's journaling, so here it is: 

In 2011, my main goal is to Carry My Journal Everywhere. 

I have tried it in the past, but except for Travel Journals, never been consistent because I was always worried about ruining my journals, carrying them along with all the other crap that seems to accumulate in my handbags. But I found a solution. While on holiday in Tenerife, I found some pretty pouches, one of which is a perfect fit for my moleskine, so even in the oversized handbag with half my household inside, my journal will be protected. 

A part of me does wonder if there is any point in carrying it around, since most of my day is scheduled (i.e. at work), so I wouldn't actually get a chance to write, but then I think even if it happens only now and again, some odd moments of journaling, it's bound to add bit more depth and characters to my journals than simply doing it at home. 

What about  you? Do you carry your personal journal around with you? Do you have any particular Journal Keeping goals for 2011? 

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Journal Writing Prompt 15 - Happy New Year

Happy New Year, my fellow Journal Scribes. I hope 2011 has a better beginning for you than it does for me (flu since 26th, and still going). 

Of course traditional thing to do on a New Year's Day is to make a New Year's Resolution. But I don't like resolutions, because they have this negative connotation that no one actually keeps them.  So I make goals. You can do whatever you want. Goals, plan, might-do, resolution...etc....but why don't you take some time today to journal about where you would like to go and what you would like to achieve in your life, or in your self in 2011. 

Without a goal post, it's impossible to aim for something. Even if the goal post changes later on, at least you have a direction to go in.

So think about what dreams you would like to pursue this year, and get journaling.