There are many reasons why writers keep journals:
Can you think of some other reasons
for writing a journal or log? Which of the reasons appeal to
you the most? Why?
- to express private thoughts
and feelings to themselves and reflect on experience
- to explore a subject
before writing an article or paper
- to practice and develop
a style of writing or a particular voice
- to record observations
- to respond to other writers
Here's what Joseph Reynolds,
a high school teacher and freelance writer, said about why he
My journal is a storehouse, a
treasury for everything in my daily life: the stories I hear,
the people I meet, the quotations I like, and even the subtle
signs and symbols I encounter that speak to me indirectly. Unless
I capture these things in writing, I lose them. . . . By writing
in my own journal, I often make discoveries. I see connections
and conclusions that otherwise would not appear obvious to me.
I become a craftsman, like a potter or a carpenter who makes
a vase or a wooden stoop out of parts. Writing is a source of
pleasure when it involves such invention and creation. I want
to work on my writing, too, hone it into clear, readable prose,
and where better to practice my writing than in my journal.
—from "I Think (and Write
in a Journal), Therefore I Am," ©1981.