I have 26 journals over 24 years. I tell you this by way of saying, your journaling tools will pick you. You may think you pick them, but when you look back, you will be surprised that the psyche was active all along. But to delight in this surprise means you have to journal everyday for 24 years. (I lie. There were long stretches of journal silence, but when I did write, I tended to be prolific.)
If you’re new to journaling, go ahead, for inspiration, and buy a leather journal, a pretty journal, a journal with a lock on it. But be aware, these ornamental diaries are not a standard size, so when you try to organize them after 24 years in a locked treasure chest with the plain old ruled composition notebooks, they are unruly.
I do find the pen to be important.
WARNING: DO NOT USE PENCIL. I cry everytime I tell this story. Georgia Tuxbury who leads the Alamo Country Club’s “Telling Your Life Story” writing group, kept diaries as a teenager during WW II. Priceless, yes? I urged her to transcribe them. She said, “I would love to transcribe them, but I wrote them all in pencil and I can’t read them anymore.”
I like medium point pens the best. Fine point feels ‘scratchy.’ I’ve tried expensive pens, thinking my words would come out more flowery, but often they are too fat for comfortable writing. So I became habituated to cheap medium point Bic in packs of 12. But the color is a thing to play with. When I was writing papers in anthropology classes, we had to use black only!!! I don’t know why the professors made such a big deal out of black only!!! , but it’s the reason my journals are written in blue ink during that time. But when I want to pull off serious adult journaling, I use black.
You will also need a bed tray of some sort. You’ll find out why in another post. I tried a) the actual breakfast trays with the folding legs, b) the bean bag with flat top, c) cutting board. I like cutting board.
Handwriting: 3 main points.
- Everybody brave enough tells me my handwriting is not as pretty as it should be for a girl. (See picture above.) I say, so? I’ve got 26 journals.
- This is a real conundrum and it bothers me every time I sit down to write now. For the only journaling I’m doing these days is to make indelible my grandchildren’s childhood. Can you guess what the problem is? They don’t teach cursive in school anymore. My grandkids can’t read their journal. But if I try printing, it takes so long, the thoughts dissolve into a pool of blank. Really. I’m confused about what to do.
- And don’t say “electronic journal.” My final precaution is: save electronic journaling for travelogues. Something about fingers to pen to paper is how the psyche, or soul, likes to communicate.
- The soul is the earthly up-welling of The Source.
~me, talking to Hod, although up-welling is his word.