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Posts tagged "journaling"

Oct 07, 2014
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Stevie Nicks: “You want your journals written by hand in a book”

Stevie Nicks hangs out with the ladies in Haim, and when she hears none of them journal (Este says she keeps notes on her phone), Nicks brings out one of her leather journals (see above) and tells them how it’s done:

On the right-hand side of the page you write what happened that day, and on the left-hand side you write poems, so when you have an evening where you’re like, “I’m gonna light all the candles and I’m gonna put the fire on, and I’m gonna go sit at the piano and write,” you can dip into your diaries and instantly find a poem and begin.

Then she tells them why they should write on paper::

“You want your journals written by hand in a book, because someday, if you have daughters — I don’t have daughters, but I have fairy goddaughters, thousands of them — all of these books are gonna go to them, and they’re gonna sit around just like we are now, and they’re gonna read them out loud, and they’re going to be able to know what my life was.” Then, pointedly, to Este: “And they’re not gonna find it in your phone.”

Here’s a clip of her talking about writing from her documentary, In Your Dreams:

Filed under: journaling

Sep 19, 2014
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Thumbnail drawings from Henry David Thoreau’s journals

Thoreau left all sorts of little thumbnail drawings in his journals, and as Linda Holt Brown points out in her paper, “The Zen Drawings of H.D. Thoreau” (these images come from her great accompanying PowerPoint), many of them have a wonderful Zen quality to them.

John Cage liked them so much he blew them up and projected them behind some of his performances. (See also: his print composite of the drawings.)

Aug 14, 2013
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Dec 10, 2012
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Cover of Keith Haring’s Journal, July 26, 1980. (He was 22.)

Cover of Keith Haring’s Journal, July 26, 1980. (He was 22.)

Sep 28, 2012
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Excerpts from John Steinbeck’s diary while writing The Grapes of Wrath

In 1938, John Steinbeck began writing what he hoped would be a great novel, and to keep track of his writing progress, he started a daily diary. “Here is the diary of a book…it will be interesting to see how it works out.” The diary is collected in Working Days: The Journal of The Grapes of Wrath, 1938-1941.

The Morgan Library has a podcast of an actor reading from the diary at different points — it’s wonderfully reassuring to hear a talent like Steinbeck worry and fret and struggle and doubt his way through writing what is now considered a masterpiece.

Here are a few excerpts:

May 31, 1938: I shall try simply to keep a record of working days and the amount done in each and the success (as far as I can know it) of the day. Just now the work goes well.

June 5: …My whole nervous system is battered…I hope I’m not headed for a nervous breakdown…

June 9: …This must be a good book. It simply must…

June 11: …My life isn’t very long and I must get one book written before it ends. The others have been make shifts, experiments, practices. For the first time I am working on a real book…

June 18: …I am assailed with my own ignorance and inability. Honesty. If I can keep an honesty to it… If I can do that it will be all my lack of genius can produce. For no one else knows my lack of ability the way I do. I am pushing against it all the time. Sometimes, I seem to do a good little piece of work, but when it is done it slides into mediocrity…

July 8: I wonder how this book will be. I wonder.

August 24: My nerves are going fast… I wish I could just disappear for a while.. I must get back into the stride and sweep. It isn’t just noise and bustle, it’s all the shots in my direction… Nowhere to turn. Nowhere. Can’t think of these things any more. Where has my discipline gone? Have I lost control?

September 7: So many things to drive me nuts… I’m afraid this book is going to pieces. If it does, I do too… If only I wouldn’t take this book so seriously. It is just a book after all, and a book is very dead in a very short time. And I’ll be dead in a very short time too. So the hell with it. Let’s slow down, not in pace or wordage but in nerves.

October 4: My laziness is overwhelming. I must knock it over… I’ve been looking back over this diary and by God the pressures were bad the whole damned time. There wasn’t a bit that wasn’t under pressure and now the pressure is removed and I’m still having trouble. It would be funny if my book was no good at all…

When it came time to write East of Eden, Steinbeck continued the diary tradition, but with letters to his editor instead:

Each working day from January 29 to November 1, 1951, John Steinbeck warmed up to the work of writing East of Eden with a letter to the late Pascal Covici, his friend and editor at The Viking Press. It was his way, he said, of “getting my mental arm in shape to pitch a good game.” Steinbeck’s letters were written on the left-hand pages of a notebook in which the facing pages would be filled with the test of East of Eden. They touched on many subjects—story arguments, trial flights of worknamship, concern for his sons.

You can read those letters in Journal of a Novel: The East of Eden Letters and Steinbeck: A Life in Letters.

(Thanks to @jamesfflynn for this!)

Mar 15, 2012
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Keith Haring’s journals on Tumblr

anniewerner:

tumblropenarts:

The Brooklyn Museum’s Keith Haring exhibit has a home on Tumblr. The exhibition opens tomorrow, but you can get your preview on right in your dashboard. 

So. much. love. 

Gonna try really hard to see this when I’m in NYC. Filed under diaries.

Keith Haring’s journals on Tumblr

anniewerner:

tumblropenarts:

The Brooklyn Museum’s Keith Haring exhibit has a home on Tumblr. The exhibition opens tomorrow, but you can get your preview on right in your dashboard. 

So. much. love.

Gonna try really hard to see this when I’m in NYC. Filed under diaries.

Jan 04, 2012
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Alien Lanes

Guided By Voices, “My Son Cool,” off Alien Lanes (1995)

Decide now!
Decide now before you continue
The list is complete without your permission
I finally know how, I finally can’t quit
And ancient ideas are on fire, my love

Completely the rope has been severed
The night screams for contact and clue
I must keep a journal, I must boast a victory
The hellfire is dying around you, my love

Around you, my love

Live on the Jon Stewart Show in 1995:

(via thehalloffantasticallyfinething)

Nov 14, 2011
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mlarson:

Silva rerum - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Silva Rerum (diary) of Krassowscy family from Ziemia Drohicka in Podlasie, Poland.

In historical Poland [silva rerum] was written by members of the Polish nobility as a diary or memoir for the entire family, recording family traditions, among other matters; they were not intended for a wider audience of printing (although there were a few exceptions); some were also lent to friends of the family, who were allowed to add their comments to them. It was added to by many generations, and contained various information: diary-type entires on current events, memoirs, letters, political speeches, copies of legal documents, gossips, jokes and anecdotes, financial documents, economic information (price of grain, etc.), philosophical musings, poems, genealogical trees, advice (agricultural, medical, moral) for the descendants and others - the wealth of information in silva is staggering, they contain anything that their authors wished to record for future generations).

This blew my mind a little bit. A private book for multiple generations! Fascinating.

Mark sent this to me, said it reminded him of this paragraph I wrote on reading Man’s Search for Meaning:

This was kind of a special reading experience, because this is my father-in-law’s copy of the 1968 paperback edition, complete with his perfect cursive notes and pencil underlining from when he was a teenager. My wife read the book when she was a teenager, too. When I was reading it, I wished that she’d underlined her favorite passages in a different color pencil, and then I would underline my favorite in yet another color, and we’d have this mini rainbow of underlines, showing what we each took from it. Maybe someday our kids could pick another color…

I love the idea of family diaries. (One example that springs to mind: The Hawthornes had a joint diary.)

Filed under: diaries.

mlarson:

Silva rerum - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Silva Rerum (diary) of Krassowscy family from Ziemia Drohicka in Podlasie, Poland.
In historical Poland [silva rerum] was written by members of the Polish nobility as a diary or memoir for the entire family, recording family traditions, among other matters; they were not intended for a wider audience of printing (although there were a few exceptions); some were also lent to friends of the family, who were allowed to add their comments to them. It was added to by many generations, and contained various information: diary-type entires on current events, memoirs, letters, political speeches, copies of legal documents, gossips, jokes and anecdotes, financial documents, economic information (price of grain, etc.), philosophical musings, poems, genealogical trees, advice (agricultural, medical, moral) for the descendants and others - the wealth of information in silva is staggering, they contain anything that their authors wished to record for future generations).

This blew my mind a little bit. A private book for multiple generations! Fascinating.

Mark sent this to me, said it reminded him of this paragraph I wrote on reading Man’s Search for Meaning:

This was kind of a special reading experience, because this is my father-in-law’s copy of the 1968 paperback edition, complete with his perfect cursive notes and pencil underlining from when he was a teenager. My wife read the book when she was a teenager, too. When I was reading it, I wished that she’d underlined her favorite passages in a different color pencil, and then I would underline my favorite in yet another color, and we’d have this mini rainbow of underlines, showing what we each took from it. Maybe someday our kids could pick another color…

I love the idea of family diaries. (One example that springs to mind: The Hawthornes had a joint diary.)

Filed under: diaries.

Nov 12, 2011
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The diaries of Janice Lowry

From childhood on, Lowry filled small notebooks with daily musings and drawings. Then, in the mid-1970s, she moved to a larger format, 7 1/2- by 9 1/2-inch notebooks. For almost 40 years, Lowry—an artist best known for her intricate, three-foot-tall assemblages—filled the roomier notebooks with jottings and sketches. The pages contain everything from original drawings, collages and rubber-stamp images to observations about herself and the world, including the commonplace “to-do” lists many of us make: “pay bills/make plane res/get asthma med/Judi birthday gift.”

Lowry said she originally started the notebooks “as books for my sons, so they could see my progress through life. Now they’re 126 chapters of a memoir.”

Lowry died of cancer in 2009.

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Take Care of Your Little Notebook by Charles Simic

Inevitably, anyone, including its owner, perusing through one of these notebooks years or even months later, is going to be puzzled or embarrassed by many of the entries, surprised by others he has forgotten… Just think, if you preserve them, your grandchildren will be able to read your jewels of wisdom fifty years from now, which may prove exceedingly difficult, should you decide to confine them solely to a smart phone you purchased yesterday.

Above: Janice Lowry’s to-do list. Filed under: paper

Take Care of Your Little Notebook by Charles Simic

Inevitably, anyone, including its owner, perusing through one of these notebooks years or even months later, is going to be puzzled or embarrassed by many of the entries, surprised by others he has forgotten… Just think, if you preserve them, your grandchildren will be able to read your jewels of wisdom fifty years from now, which may prove exceedingly difficult, should you decide to confine them solely to a smart phone you purchased yesterday.

Above: Janice Lowry’s to-do list. Filed under: paper

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