Journaling for Posterity—10 Tips for Writers

Have you noticed what’s popular in journaling? Writers are mixing words and art to form treasured keepsakes. The simple observations shared in today’s journals are destined to be history lessons for the next generation.

With that in mind, create a journal for posterity!

Here are a few tips:

1.   If something tugs at your heart, catches your interest, or makes you laugh, pick up your notebook and write about it.

2.   Don’t revise, rewrite, or be concerned about punctuation and spelling. Record your observations and then move on.

3.   Let your words flow. Don’t worry about writing too much or too little. Write from the heart and let your gut tell you when enough is enough.

Take your time and be creative!

4.   Be creative. Include sketches, photographs and other keepsakes.

5.   Try not to sugarcoat your words. Write truthfully about heartaches and frustrations.

6.   Write about your family, friends and the strangers you meet. Include facts, events, details and dates.

Writing in the margin of a bible is another popular journal form

Writing in the margin of a bible is another popular journal form

7.   Write about what you love and what you find interesting. Don’t worry about it being boring. What seems like the most ordinary thought today might be of great interest decades or even a century from now.

8.   Write about the world. What is happening socially and politically? How do you feel about it?

9.   Imagine your journal being passed from generation to generation. What would you like future generations to know? What ideas and values would you share with them? What advice would you give?

10. Preserve what you write. Don’t keep your journal such a secret that it can’t be found. Keep it in a safe place. Tell your children about it. Some writers have even willed their journals to their children with the request that they be kept in the family and passed down through the generations.

Who knows?
Maybe someday yours
will be among other famous published journals
like The Diary of Anne Frank, The Journals of Lewis and Clark, or Caroline Henderson’s Letters From the Dust Bowl. If not, the outcome will be just as gratifying. You will have preserved your personal history and given your children and grandchildren the wonderful gift of a legacy.


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Filed under Creativity, Inspiration, journaling

6 responses to “Journaling for Posterity—10 Tips for Writers

  1. Dee Toomey

    Love this post, Jean. I have joined an Empty Nesters Family Home Evening in my church, and we meet Monday nights. Recently I had it in my home and my lesson was on journaling. I would like to post a link to our ENFHE group on face book to this article. I hope that is okay with you.


  2. Great tips, thanks for sharing 🙂


  3. I’ve been journaling for years. Somehow getting stuff from your head and heart onto a page has a calming effect. Thanks for the tips. I date all my journal posts.


  4. You’re welcome, Susan. Thanks for stopping by.


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