What Kind Of Journal Should I Have?
When it comes to journaling it really depends on your personality and preference of writing/organization. When it comes to me, an 18 year old mess of a college student I tend to prefer a more free style of journaling. That being, on any given day creating a style of spread I damn well please. For example, my journal that lasted me a few years is now a book bursting at the seems from general wear and tear, but most of all an explosion of self exploration and expression. Most pages being scraps of images or memories (concert tickets, movie stubs, photographs) slapped onto a page accompanied by a poem, entry or simply a date in time. Other pages are collages, one of my favorites was a page I used as a secret keeper. I used an old gardening book and cut out five or six illustrations of the foliage I loved and glued them to the pages like pockets, leaving space in the middle for more collage ideas. I then cut out five or six more illustrations, lined them with plain white paper so I could write small notes on the back. However, when I folded them in half and tucked them in the pockets they just looked like half of an illustration of foliage behind another; hiding my secrets from whoever might pass through my journal. Thus making it look like a page of plants, but it really was a page of secrets and little notes!
Another Great Style Of Journal I’ve Used!
Over the past few years I have lost a bit of my creative side from personal issues to life taking away my focus from time to time. Nevertheless, I still wanted to document my time here on this earth (especially my last two years in high school, those being particularly cringe worthy). I kept a words only journal for over two years and I can say it was a game changer for me. Short and simple entries some days , but some days lengthy entries spanning several pages, a brain dump. I’d use it to explain my day to day or for creative writing purposes, exploring my fictional voice. It gave me a chance to build up my writing skills, better my handwriting and help me to come to the conclusion that I;d like to pursue writing as a career. Having a journal only filled with words is powerful because in the end it is like flipping through the pages of a novel, your novel. Exploring and guiding you through the climax and downfall of your past few years. One that you can read when you're old and think back to the times when life seemed absurdly impossible, but you had no clue what was to come in the later years.
The Shared Journal!
One journal style I'm particularly fond of is the "shared journal". A few friends and I, four or five years ago, would each take a week or two to create a spread or collage for the rest of the group. Sometimes we would write letters to each other along side an inspiration collage or spread to encourage one another. I found this style to be beautiful because we were inspiring each other's creativity. I found this style to be beautiful because we were inspiring each other's creative side and encouraging growth through the pages of our shared journal.
In the end, a journal should be a place to cultivate creativity and growth. A place that feels like home and is safe.