I am going to try a change in my journalling method. Instead of writing three pages of longhand, which takes me about 35 minutes, I am going to write in three bursts of ten minutes on my computer. I don’t intend that there should a gap of more than a minute or so between the writing bursts because what I am trying to achieve is a greater focus.
Of course the usual rules about journaling will apply. No going back or correcting. Keep writing and don’t think. And above all I must resist the temptation to think about how it might look if I published it in the blog. In any case I have absolutely no intention of publishing more than the occasional extract.
There’s quite a different dynamic between handwriting and writing on the computer. Some people say that one should write with the screen switched off so that you can’t look back and see what you have written. I think that’s taking it a bit to the extreme - on the few occasions that I have tried it I have found it rather disconcerting. It results in a lot of uncorrected mistakes of course, but also there is a sense of being in darkness, of wandering around without being able to see one’s way. The results aren’t too bad though once they have been edited. But I don’t really like doing it that way.
I prefer to type on a screen where I can see what I am writing. It helps me to keep some sort of shape and focus. The one thing that must be borne firmly in mind is that editing must be left until afterwards. If something comes out of the journalling which seems worth preserving, then it should be reshaped later, not at the time of writing. Writing and editing are two separate operations which should be carried out at two separate times.
I’m now wondering if be better to write several ten minute bursts throughout the day? A ten minute article or thought is just about the right length for a blog posting, and for a longer article one can always string several together.