My Journey

From mind to paper and back again.

Types of Writing Journals

on July 19, 2010

I wrote an article not long ago about writing a journal http://writinghood.com/writing/writing-a-journal-and-freeing-your-mind/ and many people afterwards said they would feel uncomfortable keeping a journal just in case someone found it and read it. They said they wouldn’t be able to be entirely honest with themselves or the journal. My journal is completely open and if people did read it they would be shocked at what they read, however, here is a list of other types of journals that you can use to help keep track of your life without having to reveal any secrets.

Travel Journals

Travel writing is a well established format of literature but as well as keeping a log of where you have been and seen you can also keep a log of thoughts and feelings when you come across a new experience whilst on your journey. A travel journal is normally written in a book in note format and written up once home for publication or just to keep, however, with access to the internet widely available it is now just as easy to keep a travel journal online, also known as a travel blog. As well as keeping notes to type up when you get chance, you can also upload photos from a digital camera and links to websites describing your travels as well.

Food Journals

These are generally kept when someone is dieting or trying to find out if their food intake has a direct impact on health or mental health. They can be kept in a notebook, on the computer or on one of the many free websites designed for just the thing. Most will offer a place to keep the date, meal option, what the person ate, how many calories it contains and also the mood of the person as they have eaten.

Exercise Journal

Similar to an food journal and sometimes combined with a food journal if someone is trying to lose weight, this tracks progress of health, it can include a training programme, what activity has been undertaken, how the person felt during the activity, calories burned, improvements on previous sessions, times taken or speeds reached or even distance covered.

Journals of Special Occasions

These can be kept to cover the run up, day of and aftermath of any special occasion, including, Weddings, Births, Christenings, Deaths, and Big Birthdays like 50ths. Again they can be kept online as a blog, as a family scrapbook, or in a special notebook bought for the occasion and you can get more than one person to help with special occasions.

Gardening Journal

There are many different types of gardening journal that include but are not limited to garden planners, garden organisers, personal journals, and photo journals. These can be kept in a number of different styles as well. If you like to keep a diary style journal you might write a couple of lines a day, miss days out or write everything you did in the garden that day down. A good style if you are wanting to record thoughts and observations. Another style is a web based journal, many are free and provide a selection of templates for you to utilise, much like keeping a blog. You can chose to share or keep these journals private as well. Most services will allow printing of your journals as well.

What might you record?

Planting dates

Sources and costs of seeds

Weather particulars, e.g. sunlight hours or rainfall

Dates of harvests

Dream Journal

This can be anything from a small notebook that you keep at your bedside to jot your dreams down in when you wake up, a lockable book or even one of the dream diaries that you can buy in the shops, some of these give you space to write the dream down and even have pages full of information about understanding your dreams so you can work out what the dream means underneath your original notes.  As with all journals the choice is entirely yours when it comes to style and how much detail you put into it.

Personal Journal

Last but not least, this is the most private of journals kept by people as a record of their life. It may include daily write ups of the mundane routine or just notes on days when something good or bad has happened and they want to record it. Normally kept in a lockable diary but can be kept online as a private blog.

One thing all these journals have in common is that they give you the opportunity to record thoughts and feelings and the opportunity to write on a regular basis, who knows, you may even find the source of your next story locked away in yours.

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