Why I turned to digital journaling

Journaling remains a major force in my life. Rarely a day goes by that I don't write a journal entry.  I find the time to write down at least no matter where I am. M. Shannon Hernandez recently posted my thoughts on digital journaling at her The Writing Whisperer blog. I feel so honored to be her guest poster. Here's Why I Turned to Digital Journaling  Writing for Healing I turned to journaling regularly in 1993 just after my son Paul was diagnosed bipolar, and I continued on after his suicide death in 1999. Journaling became my therapy. Keeping my fingers moving across the page was both an obsession and a healing balm. It gave me a way to organize my fears, pain, and thoughts. As a result I have become a huge proponent of journaling as a way to heal. I still journal every day. At first I wrote in notebooks the finer the better. I especially love the ones I bought in France and later found at Banner Stationer's in El Segundo California Clairefontaine. The pages are very th … [Read more...]

Please welcome The Writing Whisperer, M. Shannon Hernandez

I'm very pleased to introduce you to M. Shannon Hernandez. I met her a couple weeks ago at Dawn Herring's weekly Twitter Journal Chat, as we discussed the benefits of journaling. Journaling is such a wonderful way to tell our life stories and kick off future writing pieces of any genre. I also like to journal to report daily happenings and dreams, and make lists of to dos and what I've accomplished. Shannon discusses her technique for journaling in short reflective bursts. Here's Shannon. The Journaler's Nightcap: Conscious Reflection Journaling by M. Shannon Hernandez Most of us leave extremely busy lives. We are bombarded with more information than ever before. A short walk from my house to the train station in Brooklyn yields advertisements whizzing by on busses, flyers handed out on street corners, and newspapers thrust at me as I descend underground. I didn't even mention that you would most likely see me checking my voicemail, email, and text messages along the way too. One day … [Read more...]

Memoir – a way of keeping a loved one alive

Before I had any inkling that I would write my memoir, Leaving the Hall Light On: A Mother's Memoir of Living withHer Son's Bipolar and Surviving His Suicide, I wrote to keep the memory of my oldest son Paul alive. It was almost an obsession. I continually wrote down everything I could remember. I didn't want to forget one thing about him. Possibly his last photo   It turns out my notes and journal entries were a huge help when I began to put my memoir together. My journals even short entries informed and rounded out my writing immensely. What else is memoir but memories? Here is a list of memories I wrote down in the early days after Paul's death. I'm especially glad to have them this month my birthday month one of the times I miss him the most. I'll always remember he slept without closing his eyes all the way I'll always remember he walked fast and way ahead of us I'll always remember he had long, thick, black eyelashes surrounding clear … [Read more...]

Why I journal

I just spent an hour with my friend and fellow journal writer, @DawnHerring chatting about journaling #JournalChat. Dawn hosts these Twitter chats every Thursday at two o'clock Pacific time. I hadn't participated for the last few weeks, so it was good to be back today. The topic was Take Action. Before I get into that here's a bit about my journaling history. When I was in grade school I had one of those little leather (or faux leather) bound diaries that had a tiny key. Mine was a 5-year diary so I wrote down in teeny script my daily events. I think my parents must have thrown it out when they sold our house and moved to California because I never saw it again after I went away to college. I journaled in fits and starts over the next forty years or so. I kept a journal when we lived in the South Pacific during the seventies, and some of those journal entries became a magazine article about our island adventures. However, I began journaling regularly when my son Paul was … [Read more...]

WOW blog tour stop No. 14

A perfect segue to my blog post on marketing yesterday¦ Today Women's Memoirs has posted my answers to their questions about: MEMOIR, BLOGGING AND PLATFORM BUILDING Marketing and Promotion on the Internet. http://bit.ly/kp6bAC They say, As many of you well know, at Women's Memoirs we are as interested in the marketing efforts that go into the promotion of a new memoir as we are in the actual writing. After all, in most cases, writing the book is only half the job. We need to get our work into the hands of readers. We need a platform to which we can draw potential readers and a variety of tactics for making our presence known. And they are so right. I'm finding the marketing of the book as much work or even more work than the writing. I am so grateful to Kendra Bonnet and Matilda Butler for inviting to post on their wonderful Women's Memoir site today about my book marketing experience so far and on June 22 when I answered questions about how writing a memoir helped … [Read more...]

WOW blog tour stop No. 10

I am so excited to be the guest blogger on Women's Memoirs today. Thank you Robyn and Jodi of WOW-Women on Writing for arranging this stop for me. Kendra and Matilda of Women's Memoirs asked me a series of questions about journaling and writing my memoir, Leaving the Hall Light On, as they related to my path to healing after my son Paul's suicide. The post not only has my answers and recommendations for other women who need to find ways to heal, they've posted photos of Paul and our family and a wonderful piece of Paul's music played by him. The music player is inserted right there on the blog. Please take a look at this wonderful and useful blog to writers of all genres. http://womensmemoirs.com/memoir-book-reviews/memoir-book-discussion-leaving- the-hall-light-on-by-madeline-sharples/ … [Read more...]