Sunday, May 2, 2010

To think, to write...

Four years ago, I packed up my life and moved it all 500 miles to one small town on the top of a hill in Southern Vermont, without a damn clue what it would turn into for me. I may wax poetic about it all for years, in hindsight, in retrospect, whatever shades that might tint the memories. Everything wasn't always perfect, but the town of Marlboro felt like *home*. But before Marlboro, there was another me. A me who filled journal after journal with tiny cramped writing, drawings, designs, and lord-knows-what workings of teenage consciousness (the first image in this post is a quick view of some pages from an old journal of mine, and two books I hand-bound on the edges of the frame). Most of the writing probably isn't worth reading, but the way I lay out the text and sketches, sometimes weaving strands of text into images makes the journals visually appealing, a flip-book of nostalgia. Once I got to Marlboro I stopped writing and sketching after one journal of nothing but text. My question is, why did I stop? While I'm not prepared to completely answer that yet, here are some thoughts on the subject:

First, why did the content shift to text-only? Was it because I felt I didn't have the time to commit to more sincere creations on the pages? Because I felt my sketches and layout concepts were piddly, and not worth putting on paper? How could I be more self-conscious in college than in High School? My intent in keeping the journals was always that someday, someone would read them. Whether that would be a progeny or a historian, an alien anthropologist... Or maybe I thought they would fall into someone's hands sooner than that, and prove how awesome I was. With that in mind, I suppose the shift was because I started sharing more with people face to face at college, and didn't feel the need to record everything on paper for future transmission.

And then why did I stop writing entirely? Even at times when I could have used some introspection, I didn't write... at least not in paper journals. I began emailing, using Facebook and Twitter, recording my movements and thoughts in communications and snippets. Microblogging. This, so far as I'm concerned, is a significant step down. Maybe even a slide. Then again, I'm not sure all that introspection helped me develop much at the time, either.

I don't know if trying to restart my journaling is a mistake or not (my own version of NaNoWriMo... whatever month it may be). But if I think "nothing I do is worth recording, not the entire day, certainly" then I'm only discouraging myself. Maybe I became more private, in an odd, long-term way.

... and here I am blogging about it. Hopefully posting this will make me more inclined to journal at least once a week...


  1. And then there's that journal you wrote, assembled, and bound for your photography exhibition. That was, indeed, awesome!

  2. You mean my guest book? or the book of photos? because there was also my epic London Journal.

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