Life during the COVID-19 crisis is anything but ordinary, and it helps to hear about how others are coping. plans to keep you informed, entertained, and engaged with lots of cool content and interesting stories, but we'd also like to hear some of yours. GUEST BLOGGERS are invited to write for us.

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Will Journal Writing Help You Be a Productive Writer with a Conscious?

Writing in a daily journal can help keep you centered on your values and beliefs.

Journaling is a method of writing that compels you to speak the truth from your heart, mind, and conscious. 

The more you journal, the more truth you speak.

In a writer’s life, productivity is everything; that means being willing to sacrifice whatever it takes to write something every day. At least that’s how it is for a serious writer. 

If that sounds a little extreme to you, but you stand by your claim of being a “serious writer,” then maybe you haven’t made it to this level of possession yet.

I used the term “possession” because being a writer is like being possessed. You’re constantly compelled to write, and you have very little say so in the matter. 

That’s why when you reach this level of writer, you end up writing something every single day, even if it’s only journaling.

Writing to Heal

Journaling is my main activity when it comes to writing to heal emotional and mental pain from the past. I’ve learned that in order for it to be effective, I have to speak the truth. 

By writing my true feelings when I journal — good, bad, or ugly — I can examine and understand myself better, no matter what it is I’m writing about.

One good example is a story I wrote on, for the Writing Heals publication. In it, I talked about not beating myself up

The initial thought process for this story actually began a few years ago, while I was journal writing. 

Years later, I included the comments in an ebook I self-published, and that was how the excerpt ended up in my Medium story. 

In this way, as well as other ways, journal writing has proven to be invaluable to me. As another writer put it:

“Writing is just one tool in my toolbox for healing. It is a very important tool though.”    Michelle Monet

Journal writing is not planned and thought out, it’s freestyle writing, which is why it has such healing powers

For me, it’s only been a few short years since I started talking in public about things that I’ve been concealing in my journals for years. 

This has opened up a whole new level of healing for me, allowing me to come to grips and cope with ghosts and negative memories from the past. 

Journal writing is more of a mental and emotional outlet, rather than a creative one, but personally, it has led to lots of other creative writing projects. 

On some occasions, journaling has allowed me to come up with practical ideas and logical solutions, long before I even realized I had a problem.

Truthful Journaling

Anyone who engages in journal writing will likely agree with me when I say there is one catch to this activity. You have to speak the truth; that’s the whole point. 

If you’re not honest in what you write, you won’t really benefit from the purging you’re attempting to perform.

Journal writing can teach you things you didn’t know about yourself, but only if you’re truthful about the things that you write.

Once you start to practice this kind of truthfulness in your journal writing, your conscious starts to become more sensitive, when it comes to other types of writing. 

A healing process begins with journaling, but you also become more attentive to the kind of writing you prefer doing, versus writing that you don’t approve of.

Writing Productivity

For those new and aspiring writers who haven’t learned this yet, when assessing your writing productivity, never look down on your journal writing. 

Journaling has been one of my biggest motivators. Through every single up and down, twist and turn, and ready to throw the towel in moment, my journal has been there to record it all. 

At the time, journaling merely served as a release valve for whatever steam I needed to blow off, but nowadays, I know better. I recognize the true value of journal writing and how productive it can really be.

Many of the thoughts and musings contained in my journals have led to some of the profitable ebooks, novels, and article content I’ve written in the past. 

My second novel was actually more like a memoir that I never would have had the courage to write if it hadn’t been for journal writing. 

The healing that I accomplished through my journaling prompted me to deal with real life villains from my past in a creative way.

As a writer, you will come to appreciate that as long as you’re writing every day, you are being a productive writer. 

Maybe you don’t really believe that right now. I understand, because I didn’t always believe it myself. 

Productivity Vs. Profitable

Once upon a time, I equated productive writing with profitable writing, that is, until I learned that the two are not really the same.

I eventually discovered that just because something I successfully produced wasn’t profitable at the time, didn’t mean it wouldn’t ever become profitable in the future. 

The important thing was getting it written down and completed. Haven’t you ever written something that you didn’t use at the time (for whatever the reason)? 

Did you go back at some point, and extrapolate parts or all of what you had written? 

I’ve done this plenty of times. Unless you write something that is specifically time related, but otherwise useless, your writing should have an indefinite shelf life.

I’m in favor of getting in the practice of writing something every day because you definitely won’t regret it. Being that productive is a profitable lesson to learn.

It’s no secret that many writers, if not most, hope to eventually receive some kind of monetary gain from their writing. 

It doesn’t matter whether you aspire to be an author (self-published or traditional), or you’re perfectly content with creating outstanding stories and articles to submit to places like Medium. 

At some point, you probably look forward to seeing your readership growth reflected in the earnings you’re receiving.

Profitable Writing

If you’re a self-published author like I am, you know that one of the worst time wasting activities in the course of your day is checking your Amazon sales. 

The dashboard they provide authors who publish on their platform will allow you to stay up-to-date with your daily book sales. 

You can even see when Kindle Unlimited readers are in the midst of reading pages of your book or novel.

Just like a lot of KDP authors, I check my stats regularly. Why am I watching my earnings so closely, I have no clue? 

It’s not like the few nickels and dimes (when I’m lucky enough to earn them) are going to make me or break me

The money itself is not the real reason why many of us writers and authors watch our profits.

Let’s face it, we as humans are fixated on numbers. Writers are no different from the rest of the world in this respect.  

More earnings indicate more people must be reading what we write, so yes, we writers want to see profits, if for no other reason than that. 

That is why I’m in favor of getting in the practice of writing something every day and you definitely won’t regret it.  

Daily writing is the kind of consistency that ultimately leads to profitable writing and there’s nothing wrong with wanting to see a profit.

Busy Writer's Life

A busy writer’s life will usually involve all kinds of writing, even when you only had plans to focus on one particular type. 

Years ago, my primary objective was to find as many legitimate websites as I could locate, to write for and earn revenue shares. 

I wrote for scores of websites like Associated Content, Constant Content, Demand Studios, Bukisa, Squidoo and more.

Many writing sites back then were referred to as content farms and even looked down on by some writers, but I wrote anywhere that I could write, especially if I could earn a few cents plus see my byline published. 

I was glad for every opportunity to continue honing my writing skills.

As far as I’m concerned, those opportunities paid off. I’m glad I didn’t worry about doing what other people thought I should do, or let someone else determine the path I should take on my writing journey.

If sticking to story writing on Medium is the extent of your writing ambitions, that’s perfectly okay. 

Just make it your endeavor to write the best darn stories you can write. 

Read other story submissions and try to figure out what you enjoy about the stories you read. That’s what I try to do. I see what works for someone else. 

Once I figure that out about a particular story that I enjoyed, I try and duplicate that same magic with a personal experience of my own. 

With so many interesting things going on in the life of a busy writer, you should never run out of things to write about.

Writing and Your Conscious

I often stop and evaluate different factors related to my life as a writer and when I do, the issue of productivity is usually on my radar. 

But truthfully, I never really gave much thought to what role our conscious plays in determining what kind of writer we are, or that we choose to be.

Looking back over my previous writing history, I think about several instances as a ghost writer, when my conscious was being put to the test. 

I recall two occasions when I had to decide whether or not to write something against my beliefs, even if my name wouldn’t appear with it as a byline.

I surprised myself when my conscious wouldn’t let me accept either of those writing gigs. I turned down two lucrative offers when I declined to do the writing.

In another instance, I took a job writing web content and posting images for an organization of big game hunters. At first I was thrilled to have snagged the gig. 

At the time, I was only making $5 a pop on for writing 500-word press releases. 

The gig working with the hunters allowed me complete creative control and I had tons of writing ideas, besides editing their individual experiences.

Whenever they sent me photos to post of the various members posing with their kill, I tried to fight my conscious. 

But I started to feel so guilty that I wrote about it in my journal, and of course, I verbally ripped myself to pieces for what I was doing, I was so ashamed. 

That is how I eventually ended up quitting that gig. I couldn’t continue trying to go against what my conscious was telling me. 

I credit my journal writing for helping to turn me into the kind of writer I like being

Thanks to journaling, I’m actually a writer with a conscious.

In conclusion, let me re-emphasize to any writer, on any level: Never underestimate the power of journaling! 

Learn to see yourself as the writer you truly are, even if right now, all you happen to do is journal. 

Journaling has been an invaluable writing activity in my life, and a stepping stone to all the other types of writing that I’ve done and continue to do. 

I credit my journaling for helping me stay busy and be a productive writer with a record that I can be proud of. 

Even when I write about controversial subjects that some people may not see the need to cover, I still pay attention to my conscious, and I owe it all to journal writing.