When Victoria Grace Howell nominated me for this tag (thank you, Tori!), two thoughts went through my head. The first one: “Wow! This should be fun.” And the second one: “Crap. I threw out most of my old journals when I was reorganizing last year.” (*lol*) I still kept some of them, though, since some of their pages were still empty. Because, really, how awful would it be for a writer to let blank sheets of lined paper go to waste?
So I went through the oldies-but-goodies I still have and chose three to share with you today. Oddly enough, none of them show much of my early creative writing projects. But each one is unique in design, purpose, and personal meaning to me. I hope you enjoy this post as much as I enjoyed looking back through some of the pages of my past, literally.
Of course, since this is a blog tag, let’s kick things off with…
The Rules for the Revisiting Old Journals Tag
- Thank the person who tagged you, then link to him/her and the creator.
- Go through your old journals (writing or otherwise), and share something from them: worldbuilding, sketches, random quotes, an entry, short snippets of writing, etc. And if you feel like something needs explaining, then go for it!
- Tag at least 5 other bloggers.
- Feel free to use the header image, or create your own.
- Have fun!
So, Which Journals Did I Revisit?
The Blue Butterfly Journal
I don’t journal often. But when I do, this gorgeous, notebook-size journal from Piccadilly is my go-to choice. The first entry in this journal dates back to April 2014, and there are only a handful of entries each year since then. But most of the entries are long, going a full page front and back and spilling onto the next. The large page size (8½ x 11 inches) invites me to go on for as I long as I need to, until I reach a natural conclusion and more clarity of thought than when I first sat down. I’ve shared a couple pages from Blue Butterfly in the slideshow above – though I admit, doing this feels like cracking open a part of me that I let very few people see. But that’s sort of the purpose of this tag, right?
By the way, if you love journals, I recommend Piccadilly highly. Their journals, notebooks, and sketchpads are durable and of high quality, and come in multiple sizes. Plus, their covers are STUNNING. Just check out their range of cover artwork here. Typically I’ve found Piccadilly journals at Barnes & Noble and The Paper Store here in the US.
The Fabric-Covered Journal
This was the most nostalgic of the three journals I revisited. I used it briefly for journaling and then for outlining a super-ambitious “concept book” of poetry (which I never started beyond that outline *lol*). But most of the used pages were notes I took when I was interviewing my great-aunt Tina between 2009 and 2010.
Why was I interviewing Auntie Tina? Well, our relatives – specifically, my mom, my aunt (a.k.a. Mom’s twin sister), and Tina’s adult children (a.k.a. Mom’s cousins, I think?) – asked if I would record her life story and make a “book” out of it. I’d love to go into more detail about the project and Auntie Tina’s life, especially what a generous, humorous, and fiercely determined woman she was. But that would be a full blog post in itself! Suffice to say that when Tina passed away in 2012 at age 93, she had lived as full a life of love, perseverance, and unwavering purpose as anyone could hope for.
I also found this folded paper inside the fabric-covered journal. At one point during our interviews, I wrote three “big picture” questions about life for Auntie Tina, and she wrote her answers underneath. 🙂
The Wild and Precious Journal
I’m not usually a fan of colorful journal pages. But when a friend gave me this journal as a gift a few years ago, I loved the interior from first sight. Since then, I’ve used “Wild and Precious” for various things. Some journal entries, a couple methods / lists for working through anxiety spells, and copying down inspiring quotes – or, as I did on the inside cover, print out meaningful quotes I found online and then tape them inside. I also have a teeny obsession for number symbolism, especially the number 11. (I’m not kidding – I see the number 11 several times a day!) So whenever I see a particular number repeatedly over a short period of time, I research its possible meaning and write them down in here.
You know what else I love about this journal? The quote on the cover. First, I love its meaning. It reminds me how vital and important it is to make the most out of life, to do what you love and never lose sight of your dreams and goals. Second, it comes from the last two lines of “The Summer Day,” one of my favorite poems by Mary Oliver. (Click here to read the poem in its entirety.) So when my friend gifted this journal to me, I almost jumped for joy – and since she’s not familiar with Mary Oliver’s work, I had to explain why I did that. (*lol*)
My Nominations for the Revisiting Old Journals Tag
I don’t know which of my blogger friends have journalled or used journals in the past. So I hope Melissa and Tori don’t mind that I’m breaking this rule and leaving the tag open for EVERYONE. 😉 If you do take on this tag, please make sure you link back to my post so I can read it!
What have you ever used journals? If you have, what was / is your favorite one? Do you still use journals now? Do you have any favorite journal or notebook brands?