Sunday, 18 December 2011

Journaling Classes

Today I have a question for you, and I would appreciate as detailed answers as possible. 

I have been journaling for years, and over the years I have tried new techniques, developed them, and tried something different. I have figured out good stuff, waste of time stuff, and what works for me. But there is always more to learn. Some new insight that someone else might have that I haven't yet seen. That's why I read books about journaling and follow journal keeping blogs and read published diaries. 

What about you? Do you feel there is always more to learn? 

If you were to take an online journaling class, what topic / what niche would you like it to be the most? What it is about your journaling that you want to work on, and feel that you can benefit from someone else's input, whether it's group participation of journaling together, or an instructor providing a structure for you to follow? 


  1. I am a moderator to a yahoo group for Christian journalers. We have studied numerous books together, read loads of blogs and sites and taken online journaling classes.

    The direct contact as we are doing right here, is where I learn the most. I learn what drives others writing by reading their writing but its conversation that spikes a memory while I am responding to them that might encourage a new writing post.

    This month I want to read interviews and human intrest stories because I want to do more of those posts on my blog. So I am doing research and going out to talk to others creates conversation, and then that becomes journaling moments for me.

    I really dislike open ended questions. For instance.."I love it when....." or "Today something that surprised me was...." They remind me of counseling testing. Blah.

    I write because I have to. My soul has a voice and it needs to speak. I respond because something triggers a memory or emotion that wants floor time. I ask questions because I am very courious how other people live, survive, create, cope and laugh through life.

    Hope that helps.

  2. Hi Dolly,
    How you doing?

    I was reading your post this morning and thinking about your question. I've thought quite a lot about running classes about keeping a journal - and the one thing that I am convinced of is that the most important element of a journal is that you keep it FOR yourself- by all means show it others, in reality or via a blog- but essentially the blog is still FOR YOU - that means that what works you is all that matters. Yes - you can look at different ideas and things to do like last year's February Challenge -which was good fun! It was a good example of how sometimes an external stimulus kicks us off in different directions. I did the challenge in my journal and enjoyed it but it doesn't mean I have to make a commitment to always working like that- I couldn't devote that much time to it . . . though another challenge in 2012 would be good fun . ..

    My journals have evolved from a 'pocket sized counsellor' to a mix between a diary and a sketch book. Though I publish work regularly on the blog, I try to ensure that I'm not doing it for the 'public eye' I published a drawing I wasn't happy with, last week just to prove to myself that my journal wasn't simply for public consumption.

    I teach guitar - often to mature students. I stress the fact that they should do what they enjoy when they can- they are NOT studying to be full-time musicians and neither are they doing it for my benefit - they're adults with jobs and families etc..

    The same applies to a journal -you are doing it for you- now if you want to be a full time writer that is an entirely different and separate would be the case for the musician.

    So maybe trying to keep the two things separate might help.

    So a few thoughts, and an appropriate festive greeting - as Hemingway said;'Write drunk, edit sober'! Merry Xmas.

    PS I've had a RSS feed from this site for some time but I now seem to be getting RSS feeds AND e-mails- 46 this morning to be precise . . what's happened? The RSS feed was working perfectly but now I get duplicates.... any ideas?

  3. Amy,

    Thank you for your input. Yes, it does help because I am trying to understand what resources keen journal keepers make use of. Of course everyone is different, and what appeals to some people doesn't work for others, so it's always interesting to get a wide perspective.

  4. Rowland,

    About RSS feed - no idea. I haven't changed any settings on my blog. Did you subscribe to perhaps both RSS and by email? Is it just the posts you are getting or each individual comments? Sorry about it. If it keeps happening, let me know and I can do some research about how to fix it.

    With regards to Journaling classes - my intention is not to take a class (though I am open to one if I find a good one), but to offer them. I've had journaling book project in mind for a long time, but I'm taking my time, figuring out exactly what areas I want to focus on. Meantime, I've done some personal workshops, and those were very rewarding. So I am thinking about classes, but not sure yet how to go about it exactly. What niche I would like to focus on, where, how (online, in-person) etc. It may happen or it may not, but it's something I want to have a shot at because journaling is such an important part of my life.

    With regards to writing, yes I am working to become a full-time writer, but that's a whole different kettle of fish. That's fiction writing I'm working on, and you can read more about that at my writing blog :-)

  5. I have been journaling for 30 years now, and I think there is always more to learn. I love reading journaling blogs, and books about journals/diaries. This year I have seen so many amazing art journals that I want to try to incorporate art and ephemora into my journals more.

  6. I'm really late in getting to this post but I'll chuck in my two cents worth anyway. ;- )

    I write daily to free up brain matter for the other creative work I do. I've learned that I have to write to know precisely what I think or how I feel about events in my life. I do hope someday to write down things I want my children and grandchildren to know. While I enjoyed your journaling challenges earlier this year I agree with the first commenter that open-ended prompts usually leave me cold.

    The way we journal is a very personal thing. Perhaps a class that shares a wide variety of techniques or options would be most useful to those who want to learn more about the practice.