That was my view. But I kept hearing that it was really good for the brain and sorting mental and emotional clutter. Basically a big bucket you can dump all of the random garbage that blathers in your head. (Or am I the only one with that problem?)
And of course it’s “so important” for writers, so I decided to try.
You’d think it would be intuitive but I need to know what the rules are before I do something so I got online and took a class*.
I was surprised that there are a lot of different types of journaling and different exercises. It’s not just “sit down, bare your soul on paper, hope no one reads it.” You can do a Gratitude Journal (useful for accentuating the positive in your life), lists (great for clarifying), unsent letters (excellent way of giving your older siblings “what for” without hurting their feelings or getting your butt kicked). There are others and all have different outcomes and uses.
You may have heard of Julia Cameron and her book The Artists Way. (Don’t panic! You, as a writer are an artist, but don’t let that stop you. Deep breath. You don’t have to be a hoity-toity “artiste.”) She suggests “morning pages” which is just free writing three pages first thing in the morning. Just babble and that’s it.
I did a technique called “Dialogues” and it was an enlightening experience which I’ll make you sit through in another post. Mwahahaha.
Have you journaled? How long have you done it? Has it helped you quiet the brain and focus?
* Spokane County Library District (scld.org) is partnered with Gale University to give its patrons an astoundingly wide variety of free and awesome classes. Check them out when you have a moment.