General Question

nebule's avatar

Does anyone here keep a diary? journal?

Asked by nebule (16452points) January 14th, 2009

How long have to been writing in it?
What kind of things do you write about?
What do you think it adds to your life?
Would you ever consider puclishing them if you were asked to?

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20 Answers

jrpowell's avatar

I don’t really keep a journal.. But last month I screwed up and had them shut the Internet off two weeks before I moved. So I was without until I moved. I resorted to mario cart 64 and writing my life story and I stole wifi to chat with allie. But I had to sit in the snow to chat with her. She is a cool lady, but it wasn’t worth it.

But yeah.. I wrote about 300 pages of my life story. But I don’t really want anyone to ever read it. I might burn a copy and bury the cd somewhere. I don’t really want anyone to ever read it.

pathfinder's avatar

Yes,I do.In there I keep notes about haw I live and love and see,

mea05key's avatar

I thought of writing a journal of myself from my birth onwards. Not gonna publish it. Its more for self -improvement.

blondie411's avatar

I think of it now and again. I read a lot of personal blogs that have creative twists and I think “I can do that” but it is always where do I start? I used to keep a livejournal in high school but haven’t updated it in years.

AlfredaPrufrock's avatar

I have a journal on blogspotter that I write in third person.

EmpressPixie's avatar

I keep a number of blogs and, of course, my twitter stream.

DrBill's avatar

I have been keepping one for several years with daily updates. It has also come in handy to look up things I did as a referance, like ”diary my records show I sent in my tax return on Febuary 13.”

MindErrantry's avatar

I’ve been trying to keep a journal for some time now (my most successful attempt, too, might I add)... It’s co-written, so to speak, with my boyfriend, in the same notebook; sometimes we’ll cover the same event from our own perspectives, or when time is pressing, whoever gets to it first will talk about it by themselves. We do tend to cover only what actually happens, though I originally wanted to have more time for musings and so on—but time won’t allow it. Over the past semester, however, we decided to keep a blog instead—we were abroad, so this was easier than telling every family member what was going on over and over again, and lighter than bringing the journal itself over. I’d like to go back to the physical journal again, since I prefer handwriting stuff, but I don’t know if that we’ll happen—we’re on break, so it’s all hanging in the balance!

At any rate, I think doing this sort of thing is fulfilling my historian’s need for documentation… I picture my grandkids finding this, or something.

nebule's avatar

@MindErrantry what an excellent idea! and would be very interesting to read i imagine from two completely different perspectives… I also picture people reading my diaries when i’m gone and them feeling quite sad and shocked at how miserable i have spent the majority of my existence.

wundayatta's avatar

My online writing and my emails and (in the past) my letters are as close to a journal as I get.

BlueDing's avatar

I’ve kept a journal since I was young. I used to write every day, but ever since college I’ve been much less faithful. At the moment, it’s turned into something I turn to if I’m stressed or worried. It helps me to write out what I’m feeling anxious about. Then I can get it organized and think it all over all at once. It helps me to stop dwelling on things. I always mean to start back up with a more frequently journaling, but I haven’t yet.

susanc's avatar

I keep journals in times of questioning. Looking back, I can see the blind spots, and because they’re obvious to me later, I know I’m past those times. I’m sympathetic to the questions that faraway woman was gnawing away at. It’s a portrait of someone trying very hard to make meaning. I’ve always had to work on that. It doesn’t come naturally.

Publishing, well, I think they actually would be valuable to other people; but I hate the kind of attention they might draw. Better would be to make fiction using them as guides. Then the stories wouldn’t be about me, or at least I could say so.

cwilbur's avatar

I keep a journal because it’s a way for me to remember what my state of mind was in the past. It never feels like I’m making progress or seeing any personal growth, but then when I look in the journal at what I wrote a year ago, I can see that I have changed.

It’s kind of like marking your height against a doorframe when you’re younger—you can’t really see that you’re growing on a day-to-day basis, but if you take benchmarks periodically, you can see that you are growing.

It’s also helped me identify a couple extra-stress areas—it wasn’t until I started keeping a journal that I realized that December and May usually suck for me as months. I’m not sure why, but knowing that May is going to suck means that I can brace myself for it and think, “Ok, it’s just May” instead of “why is this month sucking so badly? what am I doing wrong?”

cak's avatar

I keep a journal – it seems to help me when I need to deal with really stressful time.

laureth's avatar

I kept a daily paper journal from about 1995 to about 2004, with periodic non-daily entries before and after those years. It was a valuable experience, and I would do it still, if I weren’t so busy.

I just wrote everyday stuff in it. “Today I worked the 1130–7 shift,” or “Went to visit [boyfriend] and we went to dinner at Outback” as well as stuff I was thinking about. The usefulness of enev the most mundane parts only springs into the forefront years later, when you want to remember.

I wouldn’t publish this stuff, though – it’s way too boring to anyone else but me. I do have a journal/blog, though, that contains the stuff that’s for public consumption.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

Yes, I have paper journals and a journal online. I started paper journals in 1995 to now, and my online journal has been around since 2002.

Why? Because I’d go insane if I didn’t write stuff down. I helps me, a lot and I enjoy writing anyway.

What kind of things do you write about? Anything and everything.

What do you think it adds to your life? Definitely the ability to look back and see how much you and your life have changed over the years. Like cwilbur said, it doesn’t feel like you’re actually changing when you’re in the moment. But after a year or two go by and you look back at the things you’ve written, you can clearly see a difference and what direction your life has gone.

Would you ever consider puclishing them if you were asked to? Absolutely. My life is mine… No matter what. There might be certain things that I’ve lived through that were hard or things I’ve done that I came to regret. I may not be perfect and that’s okay. Everything I’ve done, everything I’ve gone through, is what made me who I am today. I definitely do not regret who I am now, so why not consider publishing and sharing with people who may know where I’m coming from? Life is life… Nothing for me to be ashamed of.

evelyns_pet_zebra's avatar

I had a journal on my other computer, but then it crashed and I lost everything. So now I post my thoughts, life lessons, and just about everything else over at xanga. That way, if my computer crashes, there is still a recent back up of it.

90s_kid's avatar

I used to. Now I don’t.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

I have three. One for strange dreams that I have, a second one for my everyday thoughts, and a third for ideas I have for stories and stuff. It’s always funny to look back on all of it, too.

Why do I do this? Because if I don’t my head will probably implode, lol. I internalize just about everything, so I find it a necessity in my life now. Good for your mental health, heh.

Would I publish any of it? Maybe not my journal of story ideas itself, but if I ever finish a full draft of my current story and edit it I would certainly consider it. Can’t hurt.

CathyBryant's avatar

I’ve kept a journal off and on for 25 years. I seem to go through phases where I write daily, and then times when I don’t write at all. I write to clear my head, and usually my entries deal with how I’ve spent my day, my impressions of different events. And almost always my entries end with a prayer—a kind of thank you to God for being with me throughout the day.

My journal is for me, not others, so I would never consider publishing it.

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