Monday, January 26, 2015

A Writer's Life: Why A Life Journal Works

The Life Journal and Why it Works

As a writer, there is something that I like to call a "Life Journal." It's a journal that you carry around just in case you see or hear something you don't want to forget (which, to be honest, usually happens at the most inopportune times). But if you have your Life Journal, and you're not in the shower or speeding down the highway, then you can jot it down! There are so many instances in every day life that make awesome material, and it would be a crime not to remember at least a few of them. So, here are a few reasons why carrying a Life Journal can benefit your writing!

1. It's Not Just Kids Who Say the Darnd-est Things

Sometimes the people closest to us will surprise us with the craziest sayings. That's when you can snap out your Life Journal and write them down (after asking permission of the speaker, of course). But some of the greatest quotes can come from the most unlikely sources, and sometimes entire characters can come from a single sentence!

2. Your Own Thoughts are Hilarious

Have you ever been waiting in a really long line, and something sarcastic or just downright hilarious pops into your head? That's right, it's journal time. If you have your Life Journal with you, you can scribble down that side-splitting thought and use it to fuel your quippy main character. 

3. Daydreams--They're Great for Writers

Letting your mind wander is seriously the #1 way to come up with story ideas, fix plots problems, and work on dialogue. It might be anything from surviving in a post-apocalytpic world to deep sea diving to making out with the boy next door--but whatever it is, you want to write it in your Life Journal! You never know when one of those space-out sessions will drift into real story material. 

4. There's Just So Much to Remember

Let's face it, sometimes the weirdest, funniest, most downright unbelievable things happen to us. It's hard to remember everything we encounter, especially hours (or even years) later. So why not write it down? With your journal in hand, you'll have endless material for any situation you could dream of writing about...and no worries about forgetting it.

And that's it! Carrying a Life Journal, (especially of the pocket variety), is so darn useful. Whether you're eavesdropping, having a hilarious inner narrative, or just plain daydreaming, a Life Journal will help you to save all the important material for later!

1 comment:

Dana Elmendorf said...

This is so true. You think you're going to remember because it was so awesome. Then you don't. And instead of having twenty scraps of paper lying around with little ideas, a journal would hold all the craziness in one place. And I usually get my great ideas while I'm running and I haven't figured out how to attached my laptop to my waist yet. :)