Make a writer’s journal to write better

Writing Article

The idea that I present to you today came to me from the practice of Elizabeth George, American author of detective literature ( find her method of writing here ). This is the setting up of a writer’s journal (also called writing journal) in order to follow his practice of writing and improve it.


What is a writing journal?

Like a diary, it’s a diary in which you write journal before and after each writing jurnal session. It is both a diary, a notebook of goals and a notebook of work that allows to know oneself better.
What’s the point ?

I’m one of the people who likes to bar items in the to-do list when I finish something. writing journal. Worse: I happen to write items that I finished just to have the pleasure to bar them …

What I’m trying to say is that for those who have the same odd harm as me, the writer’s logbook is a blessing. This really allows to follow its progress in the form of quantifiable data (duration of sessions, number of written words …).

This is also of interest if you want to analyze your moods as you write journal. Are you more efficient when you write sad? When do you know where you are going?
It is really a tool that can help you improve your writing practice.

Other elements to include in your notebook
In addition to the quantifiable data. It is quite possible to drag other elements into your writer’s notebook.

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Moments of automatic writing

Before each writing journal session, in order to unlock you, you can start an automatic writing session.  In other words, a session during which you write journal everything that passes you by the pen. It’s an interesting exercise that can be much more productive than it looks like this 🙂

Book of ideas, characters

You can also write down your ideas and inspirations in your writing book or writing journal  – though I prefer to write them down in other places, usually on loose envelopes on my desk or on Evernote .

Progress of the projects

You can finally note the progress of your various projects. writing journal. For my part, I prefer to have an excellent document in the form of a progress chart dedicated to each of my current projects. I find it even more rewarding and effective than a notebook.

How to set it up?

Depending on your tastes and intentions, you can opt for a notebook in paper format or for an excel board.
In a notebook, you can easily note the date, make a small writing journal session before you start and conclude with the information of your writing journal session (number of words, time, mood …)

My first writing session

On an excel board, you can also have an effective logbook: a column for the date, a column for the place, a column for the time spent writing journal, a column for the number of words … The table of progress of the Nano is a beautiful tool to inspire.

My own set up

For my part, I realized during my first NaNo in 2012 the effectiveness of having a chart of follow-up of my project being written. writing journal. Thanks to him, I had the impression of advancing. And it is a pleasant feeling when working on a big project where the feeling of trampling is strong.

Since then, I created, for each new project of novel, a table of progress for the project in addition to the notebook that I use to work on my project.

Reading the book by Elisabeth George. I found it interesting to have a way to track my emotions and my progress on my entire writing practice. And realized that my follow-up project was not enough. I just started my notebook and I did my first writing journal session. Yesterday, to inaugurate it.

If you’re interested. I’ll give you an article in a few months. That will use this notebook again to see. What I learned about using it and to make sure that it helped me.

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